ANKARA: Turkish government ran a budget surplus of TL 11.4 billion ($3.06 billion) in January, the country’s finance minister reported Wednesday. “The budget showed a solid performance in the first month of the new year,” said Naci Ağbal. Official data showed Turkish government revenues in January stood at TL 58.8 billion, a 25.8 percent increase year-on-year. “Last month, the government’s tax revenues rose 22 percent to reach TL 48.4 billion and tax-excluded incomes stood at TL 10.4 billion, up 47.2 percent over the same month in 2016,” continued Ağbal. He stated that budget expenditures in January also rose to TL 47.3 billion, in line with year-end targets, an 11.3 percent rise from a year earlier.
The finance minister stressed that the government made nearly TL 6.5 billion in interest payments last month, amid a nearly TL 18 billion budget surplus, excluding debt interest payments. Last year Turkey’s government ran a TL 29.3 billion budget deficit. According to the ministry, government budget revenues reached TL 554.4 billion in 2016, up 14.8 percent over 2015. Budget expenditures for last year rose to TL 583.7 billion, a 15.3 percent rise year-on-year. Interest expenses stood at TL 50.2 billion in that period, down 5.2 percent from the previous year.