January 29, 2018 / 2:58 PM / 25 days ago

UPDATE 1-Kuwait projects $17 billion deficit in 2018/2019 budget

(Adds figures from current budget ending on March 31, subsidies)

KUWAIT, Jan 29 (Reuters) - Kuwait on Monday announced a state budget for the year ending on March 31, 2019, that projects spending at 20 billion dinars ($66.7 billion) and revenues at 15 billion dinars.

The Kuwaiti Finance Minister Nayef al-Hajraf said the budget would be based on an average oil price of $50 per barrel, and that the deficit would be financed by borrowing and using reserves.

The 5 billion-dinar deficit would be before the transfer of 10 percent of revenues to Kuwait’s sovereign wealth fund.

The budget deficit for the current fiscal year, which ends on March 31, 2018, was estimated at 6.556 billon dinars before the 10 percent deposit into the sovereign wealth fund, according to a calculation by Reuters.

Hajraf said that subsidies are projected at 3.432 billion dinars of the budget.

The budget for the current fiscal year was estimated based on an oil price of $45.

Oil revenues are expected to reach 13.3 billion dinars, up from 11.7 billion dinars a year ago. Non-oil income is projected to remain almost flat at 1.6 billion dinars. ($1 = 0.2997 Kuwaiti dinars) (Reporting by Ahmed Hagagy, writing by Sami Aboudi, editing by Andrew Torchia, Larry King)

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