SAO PAULO, Oct 27 (Reuters) - The Brazilian government expects a primary budget deficit of 51.8 billion reais ($13.3 billion) for this year but the shortfall could be bigger, the planning and finance ministries said in a joint statement on Tuesday.
The deficit could grow should the government decide to pay debt it owes to state-controlled lenders before year-end. The statement did not detail the size of that debt. Analysts estimate that such debt could be between 35 billion reais and 40 billion reais.
The government is waiting for a decision by the country's Federal Accounts Court on whether it needs to pay that debt immediately or in installments. (Reporting by Patricia Duarte; Writing by Alonso Soto; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)