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Yanamala Ramakrishnudu: AP’s financial position is alarming

Amaravati: Casting a shadow over the state’s 12.23 per cent economic growth story, Andhra Pradesh Finance Minister Yanamala Ramakrishnudu today said that their financial position was indeed “alarming”.

“It’s alarming. We are in deep trouble,” the Finance Minister told the press on the sidelines of a pre-budget meeting here this afternoon.

He attributed the situation to a sharp drop in revenues and an “extraordinary” hike in both fiscal and revenue deficits in the 2016-17 budget.

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“The revenue deficit has been increasing abnormally. As against the budgetary estimate of Rs 4868 crore, revenue deficit is shooting up to a staggering Rs 14,134 crore. Likewise, the fiscal deficit is touching Rs 24,000 crore against the estimated Rs 20,497 crore. This will be about 3.6 per cent to 4 per cent, much above the 3 per cent norm under the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act,” Yanamala said.

The Finance Minister said the state’s revenue has decreased by seven per cent in December, as compared to November post demonetisation, but did not specify the exact amount of shortfall.

“We are still computing the figures,” he added.

While AP’s budget for 2016-17 was pegged at Rs 1,35,688 crore, the government has already spent Rs 94,415 crore.

“The departments have now come up with fresh proposals for an additional expenditure of Rs 22,160 crore, over and above the budgetary allocations. We have to borrow heavily for this and we are seeking a one per cent relaxation in the FRBM limit. The Union Cabinet has to take a decision on this,” Yanamala said.

The Finance Minister, however, claimed the increased revenue expenditure exemplified “good development”.

“We are spending more on energy, infrastructure, capital city, water resources and panchayat raj and rural development. This is a good sign of development,” he noted.

–PTI

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