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Canadian province Saskatchewan forecasts C$1.1 bln surplus in 2022-23

OTTAWA, Nov 29 (Reuters) - The Canadian province of Saskatchewan forecast on Tuesday a C$1.1-billion ($812.3 million) surplus in the current 2022-23 fiscal year, driven by higher revenue from taxes as well as strong potash and oil prices.

The province, home to the world’s biggest potash industry, had projected a deficit of C$462.9 million in its budget in March.

“Revenue is forecast to be up from budget, largely the result of high potash and oil prices, as well as higher taxation revenue which reflects solid economic growth,” Saskatchewan Finance Minister Donna Harpauer said in a mid-year fiscal update.

Revenue is now forecast to be C$19.5 billion, up 13.7% from the budget forecast. The increase is largely due to a C$1.4 billion increase in non-renewable resource revenue at mid-year over the budget.

Expectations of a stronger fiscal year has helped the province borrow less and retire up to C$1 billion in operating debt, leading to a C$2.1 billion lower public debt forecast compared with the March budget, according to the mid-year update.

“Saskatchewan’s economy is performing well and is expected to lead the provinces in growth in 2022 and 2023,” Harpauer said.

The province’s real GDP is expected to grow by 5.3% in 2022 and 1.9% in 2023, based on an average of private sector forecasts. ($1 = 1.3542 Canadian dollars) (Reporting by Ismail Shakil in Ottawa; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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