Australian tax revenue continues to fall as company profits decline and mining boom cools

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Australia's government has revealed its tax revenue has continued to fall in recent months as company profits declined and the mining boom that kept the nation out of recession cools.

Prime Minister Julian Gillard said Monday that revenue for the fiscal year ending June 30 will be 12 billion Australian dollars ($12.4 billion) less than the Treasury's forecast in October when a slender budget surplus of AU$1.1 billion was predicted.

Tax revenue is now expected to reach AU$340 billion in the current fiscal year. Economists expect a deficit of between AU$10 billion and AU$20 billion.

Gillard warned that a tough annual budget would be released on May 14, her center-left Labor Party government's last before general elections in September that it faces an uphill battle to win.