New Delhi: The fiscal deficit will overshoot to 3.5% from the earlier estimate of 3.2% in the current fiscal, ending 31 March, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today.
The target has been fixed at 3.3% for 2018-19 as against the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act target of 3%.
Expressing the government’s commitment to bring down the fiscal deficit, Jaitley said in his Budget speech that he has endeavoured to bring down the fiscal deficit from 4.1% in 2014-15 to 3.9% in the following year and further to 3.5% in 2016-17.
The fiscal deficit has a bearing on sovereign rating of the country as well as the debt market.
FRBM Review Panel headed by former Revenue Secretary NK Singh had recommended debt to GDP ratio of 60% by 2023 and fiscal deficit at 3% for next 3 years.
Meanwhile, Congress leader P Chidambaram today said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had failed the fiscal consolidation test in Budget 2018-19 and this would have serious consequences.
The former finance minister said the fiscal deficit limit of 3.2% in 2017-18 had been breached and was estimated at 3.5%.
“The finance minister fails the fiscal consolidation test and this failure will have serious consequences,” Chidambaram said soon after the finance minister completed his budget speech.