The Federal Government has released the 2010-11 Final Budget Outcome, finding that the global financial downturn had wiped $40 billion off the forecasted growth rates.


“While Australia avoided recession, the global financial crisis still cut around $130 billion from government revenues as the economy slowed markedly and businesses accumulated substantial income and capital losses that continue to be offset against tax liabilities,” Treasurer Wayne Swan said.


The Australian Government general government sector recorded an underlying cash deficit of 3.4 per cent of GDP ($47.7 billion) for 2010-11.


The outcome for the underlying cash balance in 2010-11 shows a small improvement of $1.6 billion from the estimate at the May budget. This was the result of lower cash payments of $3.6 billion, offset partially by lower cash receipts (excluding Future Fund earnings) of $2.0 billion.


Total taxation receipts for 2010-11 were $1.7 billion lower than estimated in the 2011-12 Budget, largely reflecting softer than expected company taxes and taxes on wages, with this softness expected to have flow-on implications for revenues in future years, including in 2011-12.


Total cash payments for 2010-11 were $3.6 billion lower than estimated in the 2011-12 Budget. The reduction in payments reflected lower than expected payments across a range of demand driven programs and the finalisation of some agreements with the States and Territories.


Australian Government net debt was $84.6 billion (6.1 per cent of GDP) in 2010-11. This is dramatically lower than the level across major advanced economies, which averaged a net debt of 75.3 per cent of GDP in 2010.


An electronic version of the Final Budget Outcome 2010-11 can be found on the budget website.