October 26 (SeeNews) - Romania had a consolidated budget deficit of 25.56 billion lei ($8.87 billion/5.96 billion euro) through September, equivalent to 5.1% of the gross domestic product (GDP) projected for the current year, the Finance Ministry said on Monday.
This compared to a consolidated budget deficit equivalent to 1.5% of the GDP in the same period last year, the ministry said in a statement.
Consolidated budget revenue totalled 115.77 billion lei in the first nine months of 2009, while spending reached 141.33 billion lei.
Romania ended last year with a consolidated budget deficit of 24.65 billion lei, equivalent to 4.8% of the estimated GDP, calculated under the Romanian accounting standards, and to 5.4% of GDP, under European accounting standards.
The government in August raised its budget deficit forecast for the current year to 7.3% of GDP from 4.6% forecast earlier to match the projections made in the country's 20 billion euro ($29.78 billion) bailout package with the IMF, the European Union and the World Bank signed in late March.
Romania, which joined the European Union in January 2007, must meet the Maastricht criteria on inflation, public debt, budget deficit, currency stability and interest rates to qualify for the adoption of the euro. The Maastricht budget gap threshold stands at 3.0% of GDP.
(1 euro=4.2883 Romanian lei)