Official refutes think tank’s calculation of public debt hinh anh 1Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
A finance ministry official has refuted the figure of public debt in 2014 as given by the Policy and Development Institute under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, saying that the method of calculation is not in line with regulations.

A group of researchers at the institute said public debt in 2014 was 66.4 percent of GDP, instead of 59.6 percent as estimated in the Finance Ministry’s latest report to the National Assembly dated May 18.

Deputy Minister of Finance Vu Thi Mai said at a press briefing in Hanoi on October 2 that the institute’s calculation includes the 5-percent provision for contingent liabilities, which is out of tune with regulations on public debt calculation stipulated in the Law on Public Debt Management.

She noted that public debt, under the law, comprises Government debt, Government-guaranteed debt and local authority debt.

The ministry is comparing the figure with statistics of donors and budget balance of agencies, she said, adding the real ratio may be lower.

Truong Hung Long, Head of the Department of Debt Management and External Finance at the Finance Ministry announced at a recent meeting that 2014 public debt was about 2.3 trillion VND (101 million USD), or 59.6 percent of the country’s GDP.

The figure is projected to rise to 62.3 percent at the end of this year, which is still below the 65 percent ceiling set by the National Assembly, he said.-VNA