Thursday, 24 October 2013

Ceisteanna (83)

Róisín Shortall

Ceist:

83. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Finance if he will provide estimates of the national debt as at the end of 2013; the end of 2014 and the end of 2015. [45533/13]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Finance)

The table sets out the estimates of end-year National Debt for the years 2013 to 2015 consistent with the recent fiscal forecasts in Budget 2014. The end-2012 National Debt outturn is also included in the table for information.

€ billion (End-Year)

2012

2013*

2014*

2015*

National Debt

137.6

173.8

183.6

189.8

*Estimate

Source: NTMA

It is important to bear in mind the distinction between National Debt and General Government Debt (GGD). National Debt is the net debt incurred by the Exchequer after taking account of cash balances and other financial assets. The large increase in National Debt in 2013 over 2012 primarily reflects the issuance of €25 billion in Government bonds in February 2013 to replace the IBRC Promissory Note, as well as the estimated Exchequer Borrowing Requirement (EBR) for 2013. While the Promissory Note had been part of GGD since 2010, it was not part of the National Debt. One of the consequences of the February transaction is that National Debt and GGD are now more closely aligned.

GGD is a measure of the total gross consolidated debt of the State and is the measure used for comparative purposes across the European Union. It is reported on a gross basis and, unlike National Debt, it does not net off cash balances and other financial assets. National Debt is the principal component of GGD but GGD also includes the debt of central and local Government bodies.

For comparison purposes the table sets out the estimates of end-year General Government Debt for the years 2012 to 2015 consistent with the recent fiscal forecasts in Budget 2014.

€ billion (End-Year)

2012

2013

2014

2015

General Government Debt

192.5

205.9

204.7

209.4

Source: Department of Finance & CSO