The state is gunning for a Rs. 9 billion cut in interest costs for 2004, after making a Rs. 4 billion saving in 2003.
Deputy Finance Minister Bandula Gunawardene says interest costs for 2003 is estimated at Rs. 130 billion, down from over Rs. 134 billion last year.rn
rnThe Minister says prudent fiscal management or accelerating debt repayments will see the figure dropping to Rs. 121 billion in 2004. rn
rnThe prudent fiscal management practices will guide public debt to 60 per cent of GDP (Gross Domestic Product) in 2013, from the over 100 per cent level at present.rn
rnTotal debt servicing cost is estimated at Rs. 314.4 million, 47.2 per cent of the governments 2004 budgeted expenditure.rn
rnThe Minister also hinted that the savings from interest on borrowings, would foot the public proposed sector salary increment bill. rn
rnThe 2004 budget to be presented on November 12 will carry details of the salary adjustments, say state officials.rn
rnThe public sector salary bill stands at Rs. 100