|22 September, 2019

Jordan's public debt still on the rise

The ministry has attributed the increase to the debts of the National Electricity Power Company (NEPCO) and the Water Authority

Customers deposit Jordanian dinars at Jordan Islamic Bank in Amman May 19, 2010. Jordan Islamic Bank,

Customers deposit Jordanian dinars at Jordan Islamic Bank in Amman May 19, 2010. Jordan Islamic Bank,

REUTERS/Majed Jaber

AMMAN — Jordan’s public debt increased to JD29.5086 billion by the end of July of this year, constituting 94.4 per cent of the estimated gross domestic product (GDP), in comparison with JD28.3083 billion for the same period in 2018, with the same percentage of estimated GDP, the Finance Ministry said on Saturday.

The ministry has attributed the increase to the debts of the National Electricity Power Company (NEPCO) and the Water Authority, which totalled JD7.4 billion.

According to the Finance Ministry’s monthly bulletin, issued on Saturday, the net public debt at the end of July of this year amounted to JD 28.2493 billion, constituting 90.3 per cent of the estimated GDP, compared with JD26.9006 billion or 89.7 per cent of GDP at the end of July 2018.

The external debt (budget and guaranteed) at the end of July 2019 dropped to reach JD12.505 billion, constituting 40 per cent of the estimated GDP, compared with JD12.088 billion or 40.3 per cent of GDP during the same period last year.

According to the monthly report, debt servicing reached JD85.8 million, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

As for the public internal debt (general and independent budgets), the amount hit JD15.744 billion for the January- July period, constituting 50.3 per cent of the estimated GDP, in comparison with JD14.318 billion or 49.4 per cent of the GDP in 2018.

Meanwhile, Finance Ministry figures show that public revenues climbed by JD144.8 million or 3.5 per cent, by the end of July this year, as a result of an increase in both local revenues and foreign grants.

Overall public revenues for January-July period totalled JD4.3362 billion in comparison with JD4.1911 billion during the same period in 2018.

Domestic revenues increased by 130 million at the end of July of this year to reach JD4.1845 billion, compared with JD4.0543 billion last year for the same period of comparison, attributed to the rise in non-tax revenues by some JD177.1 million and the decrease in tax revenues by JD46.8 million.

The ministry figures also showed that expenditures increased by JD225 million to hit JD5.075 billion in comparison with JD4.850 billion in 2018 for the same period of comparison.

The ministry also revealed in its monthly financial developments report that the deficit after external grants amounted to about JD738.8 million, compared to a deficit of about JD658.8 million for the same comparison period in 2018.

The deficit before external grants totalled JD890.5 million, while it was JD795.9 million in 2018’s January-July period.

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