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TN revenue deficit down by Rs 3,000 crore, says Finance Minister

Presenting a tax-free budget for 2023-24 in the Assembly, he said the government's measures have helped to reduce the revenue deficit.

TN revenue deficit down by Rs 3,000 crore, says Finance Minister
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Tamil Nadu Finance minister Dr P.T.R. Thiagarajan
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CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu government has reduced the annual revenue deficit by about Rs 3,000 crore in the revised estimates of the current year, from about Rs 62,000 crore inherited when the DMK assumed office nearly two years ago, Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan said on Monday.

Presenting a tax-free budget for 2023-24 in the Assembly, he said the government's measures have helped to reduce the revenue deficit.

"This was approximately Rs 5,000 crore lower than the level of the pre-COVID year of 2019-20," he said.

"In accordance with the mandate of the Fiscal Responsibility Act of achieving zero-revenue deficit, the State will adopt a smooth glide path without compromising on our welfare initiatives and developmental priorities," he said.

ये भी प�ें- TN govt presents Budget, says revenue deficit on decline

Fall in tax revenue in the previous years was the main reason for the fiscal stress faced by the government at the time of assuming office, he claimed.

The State's own tax revenue (SOTR) is estimated to increase to Rs 1,51,870.61 crore in the revised estimates, as compared to Rs 1,42,799.93 crore in the Budget estimates for 2022-23. In the coming years, the SOTR is estimated to further increase to Rs 1,81,182.22 crore, which is a growth of 19.30 percent over the revised estimates.

The SOTR is estimated at Rs 15,309.40 crore in the revised estimates, similar to the projections in Budget estimates for 2022-23. In the coming years, it is estimated to be at Rs 20,223.51 crore, which is an increase of 32.10 percent over the revised estimates.

Since 2015-16 when the revenue deficit breached the 1 per cent GSDP mark for the first time, the finances deteriorated continuously with revenue deficit increasing in leaps and bounds to reach 3.28 percent in 2020-21.

"This government through reforms of unprecedented scale and scope, has not only managed to arrest but also actually reversed the declining trend by bringing down revenue deficit by record levels to 1.23 per cent of the GSDP, close to the ratio of 2015-16," the Finance Minister said.

In the coming years, despite the inclusion of an amount of Rs 7,000 crore for 'Magalir Urimai Thogai' scheme (Rs 1,000 to women heads of eligible households) -- one of the biggest cash transfer schemes implemented by any State government in the history of this country -- the revenue deficit of the State has been contained at 1.32 per cent of the GSDP much below the levels of 2017-18, he said.

In the Budget estimates for 2023-24, the revenue deficit is estimated at Rs 37,540.45 crore.

The government has given a further push to the capital expenditure in the State in this budget providing an allocation of Rs 44,365.59 crore. The total capital outlay of the State including net loans and advances is estimated at Rs 54,534.46 crore.

The fiscal deficit has been estimated at Rs 74,524.64 crore. The net borrowings in 2023-24 is projected at Rs 91,866.14 crore.

The revenue expenditure is estimated at Rs 3,08,055.68 crore. The major components include: expenditure on account of salaries to government staff estimated to be Rs 77,240.31 crore, subsidies for power utility TANGEDCO and transfers on account of implementing the 'Magalir Urimai Thogai' is estimated to be at Rs 1,22,088.19 crore.

"We are well on our way to becoming a revenue-neutral State again, which will form the ideal condition for investment and growth... I wish to point out that this government has announced new projects and schemes involving expenditure of over Rs 1 lakh crore since assuming office on May 7, 2021," Rajan said.

He claimed that Tamil Nadu's growth is higher than the national GDP which is a positive sign, and this growth advantage is expected to continue in the coming year though a potential slowdown in the global economy, as many anticipate, could reduce all growth rates at the State and national level, he pointed out.

The State will attempt to maintain a healthy growth in revenue receipts through resource augmentation and improvement in revenue collection efficiency, the Finance Minister added.

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