Budget Issues:

Budgeting Practices in West Germany, France, Sweden, and Great Britain

AFMD-87-8FS: Published: Nov 24, 1986. Publicly Released: Dec 24, 1986.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the budgeting practices of West Germany, France, Sweden, and Great Britain, specifically: (1) whether their budgets are on a cash or accrual accounting basis; (2) whether they have unified budgets or separate capital and noncapital budgets; (3) how they fund capital and noncapital expenditures; and (4) whether they have balanced-budget requirements.

GAO found that: (1) all of the countries have a unified, cash-basis budget; (2) although none of the countries has a separate capital budget, they each provide information in their budget documents on capital investment expenditures; (3) income and value-added taxes are the primary funding sources for capital and noncapital investments; (4) none of the countries earmarks funds from a specific source of revenues for capital investments; (5) Sweden, Great Britain, and France are permitted to have a budget deficit; and (6) West Germany is legislatively required to balance its current-year budget, and does so by borrowing to cover the difference between revenues and expenditures.

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