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Public Sector Borrowing Requirement

Volume 77: debated on Friday 26 April 1985

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing the public sector borrowing requirement as a percentage of gross domestic product in each year since 1955 in the United Kingdom compared with the United States of America, Germany, France, Italy and Japan.

Public sector borrowing requirements are not generally available for other countries. In any case, the figures would not be comparable owing to differences in institutional coverage of public sector accountsComparisons of general Government financial balances are less problematic but should still be interpreted with caution. The OECD publishes comparable statistics of general Government financial balance as a proportion of GDP/GNP. The IMF statistics published in the "International Financial Statistics Yearbook" are based mainly on national definitions of central Government and are thus not strictly comparable. The OECD figures for

United Kingdom, United States, Germany, France, Italy and Japan are only published for 1960 and 1965–83, and are as in the table shown.

General Government financial balances as percentage of GDPIGNP (market prices)
United States of AmericaJapanGermanyFranceUnited KingdomItaly
19601·10·63·00·9-1·0-0·9
1965-0·50·6-0·40·4-2·1-3·2
1966-0·50·2-0·10·3-0·3-3·3
1967-2·31·2-1·3-0·3-1·5-1·7
1968-0·1-2·7-0·8-0·8-0·5-2·8
19691·6-1·61·10·9-0·6-3·1
1970-1·11·90·20·93·0-5·0
1971-1·81·4-0·20·71·5-7·1
1972-0·30-4-0·50·8-1·2-9·2
19730·60·51·20·9-2·6-8·5
1974-0·30·4-1·30·6-3·7-8·1
1975-4·2-2·7-5·7-2·2-4·5-11·7
1976-2·1-3·7-3·4-0·5-4·9-9·0
1977-0·9-3·8-2·4-0·8-3·1-8·0
19780·2-5·5-2·5-1-9-4·2-9·7
19790·6-4·8-2·7-0·7-3·2-9·5
1980-1·2-4·5-3·10·2-3·8-8·0
1981-0·9-4·0-3·8-1·8-3·1-11·9
1982-3·8-3·4-3·4-2·5-2·4-12·7
1983-4·1-3·3-2·7-3·4-3·3-11·8
-indicates deficit.

Sources: 1960, 1968–69 OECD Historical Statistics 1960–1981 (1983)

1965–1967 OECD Occasional Studies (July 1976)

1970–1979 OECD Economic Studies (Autumn 1984)

1980–1983 OECD Economic Outlook (December 1984)