Dáil Éireann - Volume 585 - 06 May, 2004
Written Answers. - Tax Yield.
Ms Burton Ms Burton
101. Ms Burton asked the Minister for Finance the main features of the Exchequer returns for the first quarter of 2004; the way in which spending and the tax take for the first quarter compares with the projected levels; if he intends to review any of the budgetary targets for 2004 in view of these returns; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13013/04]
Mr. McCreevy Mr. McCreevy
Mr. McCreevy: The full, detailed Exchequer statement is published on my Department’s website each month. The Exchequer balance for the first quarter of 2004 showed a surplus of €272 million. The current account balance showed a surplus of €942 million, while the capital account balance showed a deficit  of €670 million. Tax receipts, at €8,012 million, were 4.1% ahead of the Department’s tax profile published in January. Overall net voted spending, at €7,082 million, was 5.4% below the Department’s spending profile.
The Deputy will be aware that the April Exchequer statement was published yesterday. The Exchequer balance for the first four months of 2004 showed a deficit of €1,338 million. My Department’s budget day forecast is for a deficit of €2,806 million for the year as a whole.
Tax receipts to the end of April, at €9,876 million, were 5.5% ahead of the Department’s tax profile published in January. The bulk of the €515 million excess over target for the first four months was due to a better than expected performance from capital gains tax, CGT, and income tax, which were €227 million and €167 million, respectively, above target. From 2003, the payment dates for CGT were changed to bring payment to a largely current year basis. The bringing forward of the payment date and an apparent increase in transactions liable to the tax resulted in significant CGT revenues in 2003. These effects carried through into the first quarter of 2004 resulting in the performance recorded. However, CGT receipts are already slowing down and are expected to return to a more normal pattern by the year’s end. The greater part of the excess over target on income tax was in the non-PAYE tax area.
Of the other significant tax subheads, VAT, corporation tax and excise were marginally below target in the period to the end of April. Overall net voted spending, at €9,703 million, was 5.7% below the Department’s spending profile. Current expenditure was €231 million behind profile, while capital spending was €311 million below profile.
While the performance of taxes to the end of April 2004 may provide some basis for expecting that targets for the year might be met, it is too early at this stage to be definitive about the overall trend in receipts for the year as a whole. On the expenditure side, at this time there are no projected excesses or savings on the spending totals in the Revised Estimates and the Government remains fully committed to staying within its spending targets. Therefore, I am not reviewing the targets set at budget time at this stage.
Question No. 102 answered with Question No. 11.
Question No. 103 answered with Question No. 79.
Dáil Éireann 585 Written Answers. Tax Yield.