* Surplus totals 26.14 bln reais, 24 pct of annual goal
* Large surplus due to recovery in gov't revenues
BRASILIA Feb 26 Brazil's central government
posted its biggest primary budget surplus for January on record
due to a jump in revenues, official data showed on Tuesday,
suggesting an improvement in the country's fiscal accounts.
The central government had a primary surplus of 26.14
billion reais ($13.17 billion), which represents about 24
percent of its 2013 goal of 108.09 billion reais.
The large primary surplus - or revenues minus expenditures
excluding debt interest payments - comes at a time when the
government plans to give billions of dollars in extra tax breaks
in a bid to add momentum to a feeble economic recovery. The
central government's primary surplus also includes central bank
and social security results.
The central bank is scheduled to release the country's
overall primary surplus on Wednesday at 10:30 am (1330 GMT).
President Dilma Rousseff's government has already said it
will not meet its overall primary surplus goal this year so that
it can increase investments and help the economy.
However, Treasury chief Arno Augustin said the central
government's large surplus shows the administration remains
committed to the fiscal discipline that helped bring economic
stability to a country marred by repeated crises.
"This was a very expressive result... because we had an
important recovery in revenues last month," Augustin told
reporters in Brasilia.
The central government's net revenue was 101.75 billion
reais, up 7.3 percent from December. Expenditures dropped 4.2
percent to 75.6 billion reais in January versus December.
Last month Brazil's tax collection jumped 6.59 percent to
116 billion reais, the third straight monthly increase.
Tax collection slowed sharply last year due to a weaker
economy and a slew of tax breaks that cost the government tens
of billions of dollars in tax income. Federal tax collection
rose a meager 0.70 percent in 2012 versus 2011.