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PNG budget deficit will triple : MP

DEPUTY Opposition leader Sam Basil claims that the 2014 national budget deficit will be more than K7 billion – more than triple the K2bn initially forecast by the Government.
“The 2015 budget will have to increase the current deficit by at least a further K2bn on top of the already K5bn to K7bn that is assumed to be hidden into the 2014 budget deficit,” he said.
“A budget deficit of K2.3bn was announced for this year but currently with the large financial mismanagement and high debt overspending by the O’Neill Government, there is a shortfall that has to be met, especially when the 2014 budget deficit is now assumed by the Opposition to be between K5bn to K7bn, if not more.”
He said members of the Certified Practising Accountants, who were holding their conference in Lae (see story on Page 6), were better equipped to assist in managing what was already a major issue through the lack of administration to control, monitor, organise and plan the country’s finances.
Basil said while the Government handed down a K15bn budget and another deficit amounting to K2.3bn in its second term, it relied on the LNG project to bring in revenue and assumed that there would be a surplus budget in 2018. He said it will not happen because the Government was borrowing outside its budget.
“It is frightening when PNG’s debt to equity level ratio has now exceeded the 35% benchmark needed to be adhered to,” he said.

ONE PNG / The National

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