Chile Posted Wider-Than-Forecast Budget Surplus Last Year

Chile posted a fiscal surplus equivalent to 1.4 percent of gross domestic product last year, exceeding state forecasts as revenue soared 12 percent from 2010, the budget office said.

Fiscal spending grew 3.2 percent over the same period, the office said in a report handed out in Santiago today. The government last year forecast a budget surplus of 1.2 percent of GDP for 2011.

The Andean nation’s social and economic stabilization fund held $13.2 billion at the end of 2011, and the pension reserve fund had $4.4 billion, the office said. The government will tap its stabilization fund this year to stimulate growth if the European sovereign-debt crisis causes the Andean nation’s economy to deteriorate, Finance Minister Felipe Larrain told reporters in October.

“We have a pretty comfortable position to face challenges in 2012,” Budget Director Rosanna Costa told reporters in Santiago today.

Chile’s economy may grow about 4 percent this year after expanding as much as 6.3 percent in 2011, Larrain told CNN Chile in an interview last week.

To contact the reporter on this story: Randall Woods in Santiago at rwoods13@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Philip Sanders at psanders@bloomberg.net.

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