Data released, Monday, by the Government Debt Management Unit at the Ministry of Finance, shows that the ratio of national-government debt to the Gross Domestic Product at the end of 2011 amounted to 73.3 percent. The figure was 1.6% lower than at the end of 2010, even though the actual debt rose from 608 billion shekels to NIS 633 billion.
Accountant-General Michal Abadi-Boyanjo noted, "The debt-GDP ratio is a key indicator in determining the state's credit rating. Reducing this ratio contributes to raising the state's credit rating and reducing [capital] recruitment costs." Interest payments on debt and Bituach Leumi national insurance totaled 36.3 billion shekels. Despite a nominal increase in interest payments, the rate of interest payments relative to GDP decreased in 2011 to 4.2 percent, versus 4.3 percent in 2010.