Finance Minister Tom Marshall gives a mid-year financial update during a news conference at Confederation Building Wednesday.- Photo by Keith Gosse/The Telegram
Finance Minister Tom Marshall released audited financial statements this afternoon for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2011, showing a surplus of more than $500 million.
Unlike the annual budget which is a forecast and lays out government’s plan for the coming year, Marshall said the public accounts represent the actual consolidated financial results of government and all organizations controlled by it. Once the fiscal year is over the public accounts are audited by the Auditor General.
The 2010-11 public accounts show a surplus of $597.9 million compared to the originally budgeted deficit of $194.3 million.
Marshall said this is the fifth surplus for the province in the past six fiscal years. Net debt has decreased by $94 million to $8.1 billion and lower borrowing levels led to a reduction in debt servicing costs of $53.4 million.
“Newfoundland and Labrador saw significant economic growth in 2010-11 resulting in increased corporate and personal income taxes as well as higher revenues from our oil and mining industries,” said Marshall. “We once again lowered the province’s net debt while continuing our commitment to maintaining a competitive tax regime. However, even with lower debt servicing costs, our total debt expenses were still $837 million. We must continue to live within our means to ensure that we can build on the progress that has been made to date.”
The Public Accounts and related reports for 2010-11 are available online at www.gov.nl.ca/fin/public_accounts/index.html