The government incurred a lower budget deficit of P34 billion in October as revenue collections soared, outpacing the expansion of state spending, according to the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr).

Latest data from the BTr showed that the government incurred a lower budget shortfall of P34.4 billion in October, slipping by 65 percent from last year's P99.1 billion.

This, as total revenue collection in October picked up by 34 percent to P385.8 billion, as against the P288.9 billion as both tax and non-tax revenues increased.

On the other hand, government spending during the month only rose by eight percent to P420.2 billion.

Nonetheless, a budget deficit still means that the government is spending beyond what it earned from revenue collections, albeit at a significantly slower pace this time around.

The bulk or 92 percent of the revenues came from tax collections at P354.7 billion, up by 34.64 percent from a year ago. Non-tax collections, on the other hand, improved 22 percent to P31.1 billion in October.

The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)'s haul went up by 47 percent to P274.4 billion due to the third quarter remittance of the value added tax returns in October.

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) also saw its collections improved by four percent to P77.9 billion.

During the month, income generated by the Treasury increased by 27 percent to P16.8 billion largely due to increased earnings on government deposits, managed funds, and the state's share from income of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp.

Collection from other offices, including privatization proceeds and fees and charges for the month, also jumped by almost 20 percent to P14.3 billion.

Government spending, meanwhile, rose by 8.32 percent to P420.2 billion.

The Treasury said the expansion was mainly attributed to higher capital expenditures from the implementation of road infrastructure projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways, modernization program of the Department of National Defense, and foreign-asissted rail transport projects of the Department of Transportation.

Larger interest payments, as well as maintenance and other operating expenses, particularly the expenditures of the Commission on Elections related to the conduct of the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections, also contributed to the higher spending outturn.

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