Annual Financial Statement
Annual Financial Statement is a documents presented to the Parliament in every financial year as a part of the Budget Process under Article 112 of the constitution of India. This document comprises the receipts and expenditures of the government of current year, previous year and budget year in three separate parts viz. Consolidated Fund of India, Contingency Fund of India and Public Account of India. The government has to present a statement of receipts and expenditure for each of these funds. Capital receipt comprises of loans raised by the Government, borrowing from the Reserve Bank of India and loans taken from foreign Governments/institutions. It also embraces recoveries of loans advanced by the Government and sale proceeds of government assets, including those realized from divestment of Government equity in PSUs.
Difference between Annual Financial Statement and Budget
The term budget is used for several documents together including the Annual Financial Statement. The other documents in budget include Demands for Grants (DG); Appropriation Bill; Finance Bill; Memorandum Explaining the Provisions in the Finance Bill; Macro-Economic Framework Statement; Fiscal Policy Strategy Statement; Medium Term Fiscal Policy Statement; Medium Term Expenditure Framework Statement etc.
However, Annual Financial Statementdistinguishes the expenditure on revenue account from the expenditure on other accounts, as is mandated in the Constitution of India. The Revenue and the Capital sections together, therefore make the Union Budget and that is why, Annual Financial Statements is essentially the Budget of the Government.
Various Items in Annual Financial Statement
The estimates of receipts and expenditure included in the Annual Financial Statement are for expenditure net of refunds and recoveries. The Union Government Finance Accounts also reflect expenditure in a similar manner. The significance of the Consolidated Fund, the Contingency Fund and the Public Account as well as the distinguishing features of the Revenue and the Capital portions are given below briefly:
- Consolidated Fund of India (CFI) draws its existence from Article 266 of the Constitution. All revenues received by the Government, loans raised by it, and also receipts from recoveries of loans granted by it, together form the Consolidated Fund of India. All expenditure of the Government is incurred from the Consolidated Fund of India and no amount can be drawn from the Consolidated Fund without due authorization from the Parliament.
- Article 267 of the Constitution authorises the existence of a Contingency Fund of India which is an imprest placed at the disposal of the President of India to facilitate meeting of urgent unforeseen expenditure by the Government pending authorization from the Parliament. Parliamentary approval for such unforeseen expenditure is obtained, ex- post-facto, and an equivalent amount is drawn from the Consolidated Fund to recoup the Contingency Fund after such ex-post-facto approval. The corpus of the Contingency Fund as authorized by Parliament presently stands at Rs. 500 crore.
- Moneys held by Government in trust are kept in the Public Account. Provident Funds, Small Savings collections, income of Government set apart for expenditure on specific objects such as road development, primary education, other Reserve/Special Funds etc., are examples of moneys kept in the Public Account. Public Account funds that do not belong to the Government and have to be finally paid back to the persons and authorities who deposited them, do not require Parliamentary authorisation for withdrawals. The approval of the parliament is obtained when amounts are withdrawn from the Consolidated Fund and kept in the Public Account for expenditure on specific objects. The actual expenditure on the specific object is again submitted for vote of the Parliament for withdrawal from the Public Account for incurring expenditure on the specific objects.
The Union Budget can be demarcated into the part pertaining to revenue (Revenue Budget) and the part pertaining to Capital (Capital Budget).
The Revenue Budget consists of the revenue receipts of the Government (tax revenues and other Non Tax revenues) and the expenditure met from these revenues. Tax revenues comprise proceeds of taxes and other duties levied by the Union. The estimates of revenue receipts shown in the Annual Financial Statement take into account the effect of various taxation proposals made in the Finance Bill. Other non-tax receipts of the Government mainly consist of interest and dividend on investments made by the Government, fees and other receipts for services rendered by the Government. Revenue expenditure is for the normal running of Government departments and for rendering of various services, making interest payments on debt, meeting subsidies, grants in aid, etc. Broadly, the expenditure which does not result in creation of assets for the Government of India, is treated as revenue expenditure. All grants given to the State Governments/Union Territories and other parties are also treated as revenue expenditure even though some of the grants may be used for creation of capital assets. Revenue expenditure which results in the creation of capital assets is reduced from revenue deficit to arrive at the Effective Revenue Deficit (ERD).
Effective Revenue Deficit(ERD) = Revenue Deficit – Grants for Creation of Capital Assets
Capital receipts and capital payments together constitute the Capital Budget. The capital receipts are loans raised by the Government from the public (these are termed as market loans), borrowings by the Government from the Reserve Bank of India and other parties through the sale of Treasury Bills, the loans received from foreign Governments and bodies, disinvestment receipts and recoveries of loans from State and Union Territory Governments and other parties. Capital payments consist of capital expenditure on acquisition of assets like land, buildings, machinery, equipment, as also investments in shares, etc., and loans and advances granted by the Central Government to the State and the Union Territory Governments, Government companies, Corporations and other parties.
The estimates of receipts and disbursements in the Annual Financial Statement and of expenditure in the Demands for Grants are shown according to the accounting classification referred to under Article 150 of the Constitution. The Annual Financial Statement shows, certain disbursements distinctly, which are charged on the Consolidated Fund of India.
The Constitution of India mandates that such items of expenditure such as emoluments of the President, salaries and allowances of the Chairman and the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha and the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker of the Lok Sabha, salaries, allowances and pensions of the Judges of the Supreme Court, the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India and the Central Vigilance Commission, interest on and repayment of loans raised by the Government and payments made to satisfy decrees of courts etc., may be charged on the Consolidated Fund of India and are not required to be voted by the Lok Sabha.