Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 November, 2020 at 8:56 pm by Andre Camilleri
The government has borrowed €700 million during the first half of this year, statistics tabled in parliament show, almost as much it borrowed throughout the whole of 2013.
This information comes from newly appointed Finance Minister Clyde Caruana who was replying to a parliamentary question put forward by recently elected PN MP Joseph Ellis. The extent of the loan is most likely due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the measures to sustain the economy.
Ellis asked the Minister to delineate the amount of money that the government borrowed year by year from 2013 until the end of June 2020 and the average interest rate being paid on these loans.
Caruana presented statistics showing the amount of debt issued by the government within this timeframe with a maturity of more than one year, coming from government stocks and Retail Saving Bonds.
He noted that the amounts do not include the cost of €10.16 million nominally in government stocks issued to the Ecclesiastic Entities under the agreement between the Government of Malta and the Holy See, signed on 28 November 1991.
The statistics showed that in 2013 the government loaned €777,083,600 with an interest rate of 3.71%.
This is almost the same amount that the government loaned during the first half of this year, €700 million (with a 0.27% interest rate).
Figures for other years then indicate that the government was gradually decreasing the amount of loans it got year by year.
In 2014, the government borrowed €648,841,400 (3.97% interest rate), in 2015 it borrowed €473,234,600 (2.03% interest), in 2016 it borrowed €597,901,700 (1.57% interest), in 2017 it borrowed €357,409,000 (1.57% interest rate) and in 2018 it borrowed €243,526,500 (1.58% interest rate).
During 2019, the government then borrowed €449,712,800 (0.82% interest rate).