Screen capture of Google Earth

PORT MORESBY, 20 FEBRUARY 2020 (POST COURIER) —Papua New Guinea Treasury Minister Ling-Stuckey says government is seeking an extra K3.8 billion (US$1.1 billion) in international financing to support the 2020 Budget.

Ling-Stuckey, when giving his ministerial statement on the PNG economy, announced in Parliament that PNG has formally applied for a Staff Monitored Program with the International Monetary Fund.

He said a request letter had been signed by the Prime Minister, the Governor of the Bank of PNG Loi Bakani and himself as Treasurer and were expecting to hear the outcomes of that application.

“The application opens the door for the extra K3.805 billion (US$1.11 billion) in international financing vital for building and transforming our economy. We cannot deliver the 2020 Budget without it.”

Ling-Stuckey said such a programme would demonstrate international confidence in the economic reform program of the Marape government. “This is a historic request. It has been 20 years since PNG embarked on such an ambitious economic reform program with the support of our international partners.”

He put on record some of the reasons for seeking this financial assistance which he attached in a letter to the managing director of the IMF requesting the IMF staff monitored programme.

Ling-Stuckey said PNG is facing several economic crisis as years of mismanagement have left the government with the largest deficit in PNGs history, a declining revenue base, declining levels of delivery of basic health and education services and significant areas to businesses and natural disasters contributing to the issue.

He said the government is committed to implementing economic, social and governance reforms to turn the situation around.

“There are no quick fix, it will take many years to get out of the economic hole that the government finds itself in.

“As we undertake our reforms, we are seeking assistance from international partners.”

“We have done so to secure credibility, to support economic reforms and to gain vital financing for our budget.

“This is another step forward, one that helps build resilience in our economy, especially as it faces the threat from the novel coronavirus,” he said…. PACNEWS

UK – HEALTH: THE GUARDIAN                                                                                 PACNEWS BIZ: Thu 20 Feb 2020