Spain’s regions obtained a “small surplus” in 3Q11, says finance minister Salgado

With a public deficit of €12.87 billion, 1.19% of GDP in the third quarter, the regional governments in Spain would have recorded a small surplus of €192.72 million, according to what the finance vice president Elena Salgado said on Tuesday. More details were reported by the Spanish press.

“… The Spanish regions are on the path of deficit reduction,” said Elena Salgado, finance vice president. Her forecast for the full year is of 1.3% of the gross domestic product (GDP).

“As indicated by Salgado, the regions, if one only takes into account the data for the third quarter, would have recorded a small surplus in their public accounts.

In the first nine months of the year, the non-interest income of the regions declined 3%, while non-interest expenses have shown a decline of 2.81% over the same period in 2010.

“‘Regions have contained their spending and their deficit. It is clear that we must continue to make efforts,’ Salgado added.

“Six regions exceed the 1.3% estimated by the Executive for the whole of 2011. The most deficient regions, based on data up to September 30 are: Castilla-La Mancha (4.84% of GDP), Murcia (3.03%) and Valencia (2.32%). Only the Basque Country has a surplus of 0.60% of GDP.

“For its part, Navarre produced a deficit of 0.06%, the Community of Madrid, 0.47%; Canary Islands, 0.51%; La Rioja, of 0.56%; Galicia, 0,82%; Aragon, 0.89%; and the Balearic Islands, 0.97%. They all have a deficit below 1% of GDP.

“At the top of the list are: Andalusia (with a deficit of 1.11%), Cantabria (1.19%) and Castilla y León (1.25%), Catalonia (1.34%), Asturias (1.57%) and Extremadura (1.98%).

Between January and June, the regions had closed their economic exercise with a deficit of €13.066 billion, 1.2% of GDP and 12 of the 17 regions had already exceeded the maximum established. The target agreed with Brussels is to achieve a fiscal balance of a deficit of 6% of GDP this year, compared to the 9.3% in 2010.

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