(Reuters) – Colombia revised its 2013 fiscal accounts and financing plans for next year, lowering the amount of domestic bond sales this year and stepping up both local and overseas debt next year, Finance Minister Mauricio Cardenas said on Friday.
Colombia plans to raise external debt in 2014 worth $5 billion, with $3 billion of that issued in overseas bonds and the remainder from multilateral lenders, Cardenas said during the annual revision of accounts.
That is more than the government aims for overseas debt this year. Cardenas maintained the level of international debt for this year at $2.6 billion, with $1.6 billion in global bond sales. Another $1 billion will come from multilateral lenders this year, he said.
In the local market, Colombia will issue a total of 30.5 trillion pesos ($16.1 billion) of Treasury bonds, known as TES, next year with 22.5 trillion sold at auction.
Cardenas lowered the total sale of TES bonds this year to 29 trillion pesos from an earlier goal of 30 trillion pesos. Of that, 21.5 trillion pesos will be sold at auction, down from an earlier estimate of 23 trillion.
He said the reduction in TES sales this year is possible because of the “flexible resources” the government has and lower amortization and interest payments, as well as a better-than-expected balance sheet at the central bank.
“This financing plan is a pathway to a reduction in deficit levels and public indebtedness that ratifies the Colombian government’s commitment to responsible management of its public finances,” Cardenas said of the changes to this year’s financing plan. He did not provide details on the increase in debt in 2014.
The government expects the economy to grow 4.7 percent next year, up from the projected 4.5 percent in 2013, Cardenas said. Inflation will likely end this year at 2.5 percent and 3 percent in 2014.
IMPROVED 2014 GROWTH
Cardenas on Thursday lowered the government’s estimate for economic growth from 4.8 percent, as weak overseas demand and sluggish manufacturing dent prospects.
Cardenas said the consolidated budget deficit – which include states, municipalities and state-run companies – for this year and next would reach 1 percent of gross domestic product. He kept the estimate for the central government’s budget deficit at 2.4 percent of GDP for this year, and said it would be 2.3 percent in 2014.
The numbers were calculated using an estimate of oil at $99 per barrel for this 2013 and $100 per barrel in 2014. Cardenas gave an average peso currency level of 1,850 per dollar for this year and 1,874 for next.
The peso closed at 1,881 per dollar on Friday.
Cardenas maintained plans to raise 3 trillion pesos from privatization of state companies this year and another 1 trillion next year.
The government expects to collect 102.3 trillion pesos in taxes this year and another 113.8 trillion pesos in 2014, Cardenas said.