Euro Area Finance Ministers recognised that Malta has taken additional measures within its own budgetary process to address the risk of non-compliance with the rules of the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP).
The positive assessment was delivered during a meeting of the Eurogroup held in Brussels on 22 November 2013 in order to assess Euro Area Member States’ draft budget plans. International financial markets have termed this first meeting of Euro Area Finance Ministers to undertake such a coordination exercise amongst themselves as a historic occasion.
“Malta confident it will reach its deficit target by the end of this year.”
During the meeting, Minister for Finance, Prof. Edward Scicluna informed his counterparts of the measures undertaken during the budgetary process and in particular the 2014 Budget in order to consolidate Malta’s fiscal situation.
While admitting that Malta’s deficit forecast was at odds with the Commission’s 2013 autumn deficit forecast, in particular as regards indirect tax revenue for 2013, Minister Scicluna noted that the discrepancies outlined mainly originate from elasticity estimates in the Commission projections, as compared to the Ministry’s own fiscal performance reports. He augured that the year-end final results will hopefully resolve these differences.
The Minister expressed satisfaction at the outcome of the meeting and in particular the approved Eurogroup Statement. He stated “The measures which have been undertaken in the 2014 Budget, combined with the acknowledgement expressed today by the Commission, confirm that Malta is heading in the right direction.”
– Saturday, 23rd November, 2013.