Tajikistan: How a Broke Government Keeps its Books Balanced
In its annual budget, Tajikistan is relying on unusual accounting maneuvers to ensure its books reflect a healthy balance. The reality is far bleaker, and international support is playing a key role in holding the country back from the economic precipice.
In November, lawmakers adopted a budget for 2018 that shows the deficit as a proportion of gross domestic product, or GDP, at a healthy 0.5 percent — a figure that would be the envy of most advanced economies. Anticipated GDP for next year is 67 billion somoni ($7.4 billion).
When counting in the local currency, expenditures are seen rising to 21 billion somoni, a one-tenth increase on 2016. In dollar terms, however, the scale of that increase is far more modest, from $2.2 billion to $2.3 billion — a result of the somoni’s devaluation.
But these marginal improvements are achieved through out-of-the-ordinary measures.
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