Peter Costello

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2002-03 Final Budget Outcome



The Australian Government general government sector recorded an underlying cash surplus of $7.5 billion in 2002-03. This result is $3.6 billion higher than estimated at the time of the 2003-04 Budget.

Total cash receipts were around $2.2 billion (1.3 per cent) higher than estimated at the 2003-04 Budget. This was predominantly due to higher than expected receipts from companies, indicating stronger company profits than expected at Budget. Total cash payments were around $1.3 billion (0.8 per cent) lower than estimated at Budget. This largely reflects parameter variations in respect of a range of family and community services and education programmes, along with delays in some contracted health expenditure.

An accrual fiscal surplus of $6.0 billion was recorded for 2002-03. This is $4.5 billion higher than estimated at the time of the 2003-04 Budget.

The strong budget outcome for 2002-03 reflects the Government's ongoing commitment to sound fiscal management.

General government net debt fell by $8.4 billion in 2002-03 to $29.7 billion (3.9 per cent of GDP), the lowest level as a percentage of GDP in 20 years. In total, net debt has been reduced by $66.6 billion over the last six years of the Coalition Government.

An electronic version of the 2002-03 Final Budget Outcome document can be found at:

30 September 2003
Contact: Niki Savva: 02 6277 7340


30 Sep 2003

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