The growth of 10.78% above federal inflation in August reflects the recovery of the economy, Finance Minister Henrique Meirelles said on Wednesday. In an interview with reporters in New York, where he attends meetings with businessmen and international investors, he said that resuming production and consumption and reducing bank losses were the main factors driving government revenue up last month.
“Tax collection reflects, first and foremost, the economic recovery, which is very important. This is a phenomenon that I would call an [economic] foundation, but it also had a very important punctual phenomenon that was the downward impact on the collection of appropriation as tax loss on provisions created by banks as a result of credits not received during the crisis, “Meirelles said.
According to the minister, because of the crisis in recent years, banks have created provisions (reserves) to cover losses with bad loans from clients who have lost their jobs and failed to repay loans. The legislation allows these reserves to be recorded as tax loss and result in deductions from the Income Tax and Social Contribution on Net Income (CSLL), reducing collection.
“This process of tax amortization of bank loans is coming to an end, so this is another factor that also drives the collection, in addition to the more relevant, recovery of the economy,” added Meirelles.
According to the minister, the government is still defining how it will decontaminate (unblock) the Union’s funds after the enactment of the law that increased from R $ 129 billion to R $ 159 billion, the primary deficit target (negative result without paying interest of the Union’s accounts this year. He did not advance what amount could be released, but said that the increase in revenue will be taken into account to “design a fiscal space” that will allow for disqualification.
Meirelles downplayed the impact of the tax increase on fuels and the renegotiation of taxpayer debts with the Union over the levy in August. “The increase in fuel is one part, but the increase in revenue is not the result of that alone.” Most of the increase in fuel prices has not yet come into effect in August. minister.
As the one-month collection reflects the events of the previous month, the increase in the Social Integration Program (PIS) and the Social Contribution on Net Income (Cofins), which came into effect at the end of July, will only focus entirely on the collection of September. The August collection reflected only the increase in taxes in force during the last ten days of July.
Regarding pension reform, Meirelles said he was confident that Congress will be able to complete votes later this year, even with the second accusation against President Michel Temer being sent to the Chamber. “The vote on this complaint would be the first item on the agenda of the important votes,” said the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Rodrigo Maia. the first item on the agenda of the important votes [the denunciation], precisely because this has to be defined as soon as possible. ”
Minister also said he was confident that Congress will resolve important issues in the next few days to meet the fiscal target of a deficit of R $ 159 billion in 2017 and 2018. According to him, parliamentarians will soon reach an agreement on the Special Tax Recovery Program (Pert), also called the new Refis, and will advance in the vote on the proposal for almost total reversal of the payroll exemption.
Meirelles also said that the overturn by the Superior Court of Justice of the injunction that prevented the auction of four hydroelectric plants of Companhia Energética de Minas Gerais (Cemig) will help the government meet the fiscal target. He stressed that the government is doing what is necessary for the deficit in the public accounts to be within the estimate. “We are working to do what we said: meet the goal this and next year. We have a number of measures for this year and next.”