Councillor Rosario Sánchez praises the “solidity and balance” of the public accounts, while at the same time increasing resources for social policies and public investment.
The Balearic Islands achieve the greatest reduction
The end of 2022 has meant the Balearic Islands the largest reduction in public debt of the autonomous community in a year in absolute terms. Data from the last quarter of last year put the debt at 8,874 million euros, a figure that represents 26.6% of GDP, according to data published today by the Bank of Spain, and represents a decrease of 131 million euros and three relative points compared to the end of 2021.
At the same time, the Islands closed 2022 with a balanced budget – a slightly positive result of 0.1% of GDP (36 million euros) – with a non-financial expenditure of more than 5,000 million euros for the second year and with a new historical maximum of resources allocated (a total of 3,615 million euros) to social policies (health, education, social services, employment and housing).
2022 was the third year in history, and the second in a row, in which the Balearic Islands reduced public debt in absolute terms, as well as continuing with the reduction in the level of debt about GDP initiated in the last legislature. Compared to 2015, the community has reduced the weight of debt by almost three points (from 29.5% to 26.6% of GDP), and during this period has overcome the impact caused by the COVID pandemic.
Specifically, in the last two years, the public debt of the community has been reduced by almost 250 million and by more than 8 points in terms of debt to GDP. In 2020, the year of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the consequent fall in GDP, the debt increased to 9.12 billion and its level of GDP rose to 34.8%. This increase put the percentage at its highest peak after the 2015 record.
At the end of 2021, the debt was reduced by 115 million to 9,005 million (29.7% of GDP), and during 2022 a reduction of 131 million was achieved, bringing the accumulated volume down to 8,874 million. The first year in the history of the autonomous community in which the debt was reduced about the previous year was 2018 when the reduction was 95 million euros.
During 2022, according to the budget execution data, a non-financial expenditure of more than 5,000 million – out of 5,024 million – has been exceeded for the second time, with a degree of execution of 97% compared to the initial budget, and record figures have been achieved in the resources allocated to social policies, with a total of 3,615 million between health, education, social services, employment and housing, an increase of 6% (+204 million) compared to 2021 and 47% (+1,159 million) compared to 2015.
The councillor for Finance and External Relations, Rosario Sánchez, has valued the “balance” and “solidity” of public finances at the same time as the resources allocated to fundamental public services and public investment have been increased. “The public accounts have been balanced and for the third time we have reduced the autonomous community’s public debt in absolute terms, which is good news and an indicator of the soundness of the public accounts and the good performance of the island’s economy,” she said.
She also recalled that “there has been a whole legislature’s work, supporting families and businesses, increasing social policies and investment, without having increased the tax burden on the middle and working classes, and when a special tax regime has been achieved for companies and the self-employed on the islands”.