|Subject: Re:Cut&paste: PNG indebt of K8.2 billion
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Date Posted: 18:16:04 07/08/03 Tue
Guys,read this article,we are K8.2 billion poor..and we are becoming poorer each day as debts keep on accumulating.This current gov't seem to have no remedies and all they have instore is to blame their predecessors of this mass which is partly true btu by pointing finger and blaming each other ever going to remove this lump on our backs....We are definitely on our way to antoher failed state just like our neighbours Solomon Is,hate to think that way,but pollies do not learn from mistakes,all they care it seems, is themselves and we heading towards doom.
What do you guys think??/
PNG is K8.2 billion in debt
THE DEBT of the Papua New Guinea Government stands at K8.2 billion since the Somare-Marat Government took office.
Finance and Treasury Minister Bart Philemon made the revelation in during question time in Parliament yesterday.
Mr Philemon was responding to questions raised by Samarai Murua MP Gordon Wesley as to how much debt the country has and if the government was on target in its 2003 budget.
He also questioned why the Government had spent K1.5 million to send the PNG contingent to the South Pacific Games when the country was in financial crisis.
Mr Philemon said they inherited a government with serious financial problems.
He said the public debt in 1998 stood at K5.4 billion, in 1999 it rose by K400 million to K5.8 billion, it increased to K6.2 billion in 2000, then to K7.2 billion in 2001 and K8.2 billion in the first half of the year since they took over.
He said if they had allowed the situation to continue until the end of the year, the country would have been in a bad situation.
He said the debt represented about 80 per cent of Gross Domestic Product.
"Anything that gets to that level becomes unsustainable so there is a danger in which we have to manage and control the expenditure," he said.
Mr Philemon said they took action in August 2002 to correct the situation by introducing the 2002 Supplementary Budget.
He said it was a medium term issue that the Government needs to take over the next five years.
"The situation was inherited over so many years, this government can't and we have never said that we can fix it in one year," he said.
He said expenditure and borrowings were not controlled by previous governments.
"If we live within our means over the medium term within the frame work of the budget until the end of the year, then we will start reducing the public debt," he said.
He said between 1995 and 2000, the debt increased by K550 million, between 2000 and 2001, it increased by K1.6 billion and between 2001 and 2002, it increased by K752 million.
"We've been living off borrowed money and we have sufficient funds in our revenue queue from all sources to be able to live within our means," he said.
He said in the past 10 years, the Government has been living beyond the budget.
He said the only way was to manage and control public expenditure.
He said the Government was paying the price now and they have "no room to move around anymore" as the country was in a "tight situation."
Meanwhile, he PNG is the biggest country in the South Pacific and it must maintain its reputation by taking part in regional events.
He said the Government funded the 365 athletes at K4000 each because without our contribution, the games would not be held.
He said sportsman and women would promote the country in such big events.
Mr Philemon said it was a commitment the Government has made for the good of the country.
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