Vatican reports £3.4m deficit

The Vatican has seen its third consecutive financial loss, with a 4.1m euros (£3.4m $5.2m) deficit in 2009.

In a statement the Vatican press office said that annual donations from churches worldwide were up by about 9% in 2009 at $82.52m. But Rtevenues of 250.2m euros were against outgoings of 254.3m euros.

Most of the Vatican's outlay was to cover the activities of Pope Benedict XVI, and services such as Vatican Radio which is broadcast on five continents in 40 different languages.

The statement said the Vatican also faced costly improvements to its telecommunication system while restoring cultural treasures and ensuring security added to the bill.

The Vatican began publishing annual financial reports in 1981 when Pope John Paul II set out to challenge perceptions that the Vatican was rich.

Source: VIS

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