Government to achieve 3.9 percent fiscal deficit target: Arun Jaitley

New Delhi: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday exuded confidence that the government will achieve the fiscal deficit target of 3.9 percent in the current financial year.

“I have consciously kept this year a very modest target of 3.9 percent. I think the manner in which tax revenues and expenditure are moving, I don’t think this will be difficult to meet,” Jaitley said here at the five-day India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS) which commenced here on Monday.

Stating that there was a better collection of revenues during the first six months of the current fiscal, he hoped the same for the remaining two quarters of 2015-16.

He, therefore, ruled out any possibility to slash expenditure either of state governments or that of various central ministries.

“I don’t think this year we have to cut down expenditure of either state government or public expenditure of the central ministries as it is moving ahead of our target as far as indirect taxes are concerned,” the minister said.

The targets for the next three years have been set at 3.9 percent for 2015-16, 3.5 percent for 2016-17, and 3 percent for 2017-18.

On disinvestment front, the minister said there were challenges, particularly on account of global prices of metals, which constitutes large part of India’s gross domestic product (GDP), not doing well.

“And therefore, I think it don’t make sense divesting at a time when prices are low,” Jaitley said.