CANBERRA, Australia – The Australian government's promise to deliver a surplus in the current fiscal year has blown out to a 19.4 billion Australian dollar ($19.4 billion) deficit as a fading mining boom coupled with a buoyant Aussie dollar slows the economy.
The projected deficit for the 12 months ending June 30 is included in the government's economic blueprint for the coming year released on Tuesday, which includes spending increases in defense, foreign aid, care for the disabled and education.
It is Treasurer Wayne Swan's sixth annual budget and is likely to be the last for his center-left Labor Party government, widely expected to lose September elections.
The budget forecasts a smaller AU$18 billion deficit in the next fiscal year. The books would finally be balanced in 2015-16.