The Puducherry government is set to raise ₹250 crore through the auction of 18-year dated securities to bridge revenue gaps for the current financial year. The dated securities would be sold through an auction on February 14 at the Reserve Bank of India’s office in Mumbai.
Early this month, the government had revised the Budget estimate for the fiscal to ₹11,500 crore, an increase of ₹989 crore from the Budget Estimate of ₹10,696 crore passed by the Assembly in August.
“The amount of ₹250 crore raised through auction will be the last open market borrowing for the current financial year. We hope to have smooth running of the administration with this auction,” said a source in the government.
“The government is also expecting the release of additional Central assistance of ₹1,400 crore sanctioned, during the mid-course of the fiscal. So, even if there is going to be a shortfall after raising this money by sale of securities, we will be able to manage with the assistance from the Union government,” the source added.
In this fiscal, the government has so far borrowed ₹1,424 crore, including ₹100 crore as negotiated loans from banks and financial institutions, to bridge the revenue gap. With the auction of dated securities next week, government borrowings for the fiscal alone will go up to ₹1,674 crore.
As on January 20 this year, the Union Territory has an outstanding debt of ₹9,369 crore prompting the government to set aside 18% to 22% of its expenditure annually for debt service alone.
Draft outlay sent to Home Ministry
The Finance Department is also gearing up for the Budget presentation next month. The government had forwarded the draft of the outlay of ₹11, 600 crore for the next financial year to the Union Ministry of Home Affairs for approval. “After the approval of the Lieutenant Governor three to four days ago, the draft has been forwarded to MHA for necessary clearance to present a full Budget for 2023-24, “ said an official.