General government gross debt was £1,731.4 billion at the end of December 2016, equivalent to 89.3% of gross domestic product (GDP); an increase of £65.4 billion on December 2015.
The latest government debt figure exceeds the reference value of 60% of GDP set out in the Protocol on the Excessive Deficit Procedure; general government gross debt first exceeded the 60% Maastricht reference value at the end of 2009 when it was 64.5% of GDP or £979.8 billion.
General government deficit (or net borrowing) decreased by £24.2 billion to £57.2 billion (equivalent to 3.0% GDP) in 2016, compared with 2015.
The Protocol on the Excessive Deficit Procedure states that general government deficit should not exceed 3% of GDP; this is the first time the UK has met this requirement since 2007 when the deficit was 2.7% of GDP or £40.9 billion.
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