Operating expenses rose by 7% due to social spending.
This chart from EY shows that for the first three quarters of 2017, total government budget expenditures declined by 2% to $53.7b, compared to the same time period in 2016.
Meanwhile, operating expenditures rose by 7% from $52.1b, boosted by spending on social development, especially in education and national development.
Development expenditures, which account for approximately a quarter of the overall budget fell by 23% in the first three quarters of 2017, compared $18.9b in 2016.
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