Alberta closes books on 2012 fiscal year with $2.8 billion deficit

EDMONTON – The final deficit number for Alberta’s 2012 fiscal year is $2.8 billion.

That’s $2 billion more than what had been projected at budget, according to year-end numbers released by the province.

Finance Minister Doug Horner has warned for months that the bottom line would not be good due mainly to a North American oil production bottleneck termed the — quote — “bitumen bubble.”

Non-renewable resource revenues were projected to bring in $7.6 billion in fiscal 2012 but reached about half that, at $3.6 billion.

Total revenue was $38.6 billion, almost $2 billion less than expected.

Total spending was $41.4 billion, just $161 million higher than planned.