July 16, 2012

The Holy See sustained its largest budget deficit of the past decade in 2011 as a result of global financial trends, the Vatican said July 5.

But Vatican City State, which includes the income-generating Vatican Museums and Vatican post office, ended 2011 with a surplus of 21.8 million euros ($27 million).

The budget of the Holy See, which includes the offices of the Roman Curia and its communications outlets such as Vatican Radio, recorded a deficit of 14.9 million euros ($18.4 million) at the end of 2011.

It was the largest budget deficit recorded in the past decade and reversed the 2010 surplus of 9.8 million euros ($12 million).

A brief summary of the Vatican's financial report released to the press blamed the deficit on "the negative trend of global financial markets, which made it impossible to achieve the goals laid down in the budget."

The majority of the Holy See's expenditures were related to wages and other personnel costs for some 2,832 people, it said.