PM Marape stands in support of the Treasurer Hon. Ian Ling Stuckey
Approved for Release: 1st October, 2019
Posted by The SUN of Papua New Guinea
Prime Minister James Marape will support his Treasurer Ian Ling Stucky in the delivery of correct economic numbers that has been debated as of lately in preparation for 2019 supplementary budget and 2020 budget.
This is in response to former Prime Minister Peter O’Neill’s criticism lately of the numbers that Treasurer is now putting out based on works that our due diligence team has been working openly in collaboration with IFM, and whole of treasury including World Bank and others.
“ Former Prime Minister cannot deny that many of us including me as then Finance Minister protested not only on the budget policies but on expenditure priorities of budgets under his Prime Ministership starting 2015 when his priorities shifted away from greater coalition interest.
Latest was my protest last November when I had no knowledge of budget frameworks yet I was forced to support that budget. These are some of the backgrounds to my resignation as his finance Minister and what the present Treasurer is doing is to fully ascertain our present economic conditions and for us to offer solutions to take our country out of the present conditions.
I was Finance Minister previously, I was part of the government that deliberately entered into debt financing so we do economic projects, but along the way the areas of investments influenced by Prime Ministers office differed against some of our opinions, and these investments now add up to our present debts.
Wether it is at K28,126 billion as depicted by MYFO or above K31 billion, the fact is that it is still very high and possibly trends above requirements of fiscal responsibility act, and Government under my leadership, we want to establish where the true economic position of our country is and then put forward policies and programs in both 2019 and 2020 budgets that should start the processes to ‘take back PNG’ out of this mess.” Prime Minister Marape says.
Today is not the time to continue blame but accept the status quo as we faced with and mitigate to rescue our country. “ Our Government will initiate immediate cost cutting on projects and expenditures of no significance to the economy, investment in economic stimulant projects, and source lower cost loans in the immediate to refinance our debts plus budget support”. Marape said for immediate actions.
“In the medium term we will look to gain better from our resources by unbundling resources through resource law changes and policy and regime shifts, including policing better our tax collection systems. “ PM Marape says.
In the meantime Prime Minister encourages the country to have positive view on our future, and look into how every citizens, every national businesses can venture into businesses to help contribute to our country’s future.
Government will endeavor to make public sector and it’s state businesses effective and productive and we will encourage private sector to grow in business to support our economy.