Last Wednesday, the Ministry of the Treasury and Public Administration Services began the monthly publication of deficit data in national accounting terms from the sub-sectors of the public administration services (State, Regional Governments and the Social Security System), thus putting Spain in at the forefront of those countries offering this degree of detail in their information so frequently.

The publication of this information represents an unprecedented move forward in terms of public account transparency and follows on from the steps taken last year, in which budget performance data began to be published on a quarterly basis in national accounting terms from the sub-sectors of the public administration services and in budgetary terms for the regional governments from October 2012.

One year ahead of schedule and with a broader scope given that the figures will be published in national accounting terms, the publication of this information meets one of the requirements contained in Directive 2011/85/EU of the Council, of 8 November 2011, on requirements for budgetary frameworks of the Member States (referred only to cash data). This obligation was transposed into Spanish law by means of Order HAP/2105/2012, of 1 October.

It will now be possible on a monthly basis, to examine trends in the public deficits posted by the public administration services in a comparable manner, the only exception from this move being the local authorities as the requirements on the monthly publication of data derived from the Directive do not include this sub-sector. Data from local authorities will continue to be published on a quarterly basis. For this reason, a consolidated figure for all public administration services will be offered on a quarterly basis but rather than monthly.

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