By Gokhan Ergocun
ISTANBUL (AA) - Turkey’s central government budget balance posted a deficit of 85.8 billion Turkish liras ($15.3 billion) in the first nine months of 2019, official figures indicated on Tuesday.
The country's budget revenues rose 19.5% to hit 653.8 billion Turkish liras ($116.1 billion) year-on-year in Jan.-Sept. period, the Treasury and Finance Ministry announced.
Turkey's budget expenses were 739.6 billion Turkish liras ($131.4 billion) in the nine-month period, up 22.5% versus the same period of 2018.
Excluding the interest payments, the budget balance also saw a deficit of 4.3 billion Turkish liras ($763 million) in the same period, while the interest expenditures were 81.5 billion Turkish liras ($14.47 billion).
The government's tax incomes soared 5.6% to 485.3 billion Turkish liras ($86.2 billion) over the same period.
The U.S. dollar/Turkish lira exchange rate averaged at 5.63 in the first 9 months of this year.
Last year, Turkey's central government budget balance showed a deficit of 72.6 billion Turkish liras ($14.8 billion), meeting a year-end target under the country's new economic program announced in September 2018.
The government achieved the target of 1.9% budget-deficit-to-gross-domestic-product ratio in 2018 under the program.
The government's year-end budget balance target is minus 80.6 billion Turkish liras ($13.3 billion), with 880.4 billion Turkish liras ($145.5 billion) revenue, and 960.97 billion Turkish liras ($158.8 billion) expenses.