Abel salutes revenue work

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Papua New Guinea Customs Service is an important part of government’s revenue framework and is doing its best to meet the targets in the budget, Deputy Prime Minister Charles Abel says.
Abel, who visited the Papua New Guinea Customs facilities including the container examination facility at Motukea on Friday, commended Chief Commissioner Ray Paul and his staff for their effects.
“The Commissioner is doing his best to meet his targets in the budget and to build this organisation and I want to congratulate him for that.
“I’m proud of the fact that Customs seems to collect its share of the budget and it’s important to note that,” Abel said.
“We suspect that so much more of our revenue is still going uncollected and there is a lot of grey and black economy out there.
“We really need to take stock and look into the system and make sure that everyone is covered up in terms of identifying as taxpayers and they are brought into the loop and we make the system fair and easy to administer.”
Abel said he would look at the structure of Papua New Guinea Customs to makes sure there was a strong internal auditing unit.
“Government is struggling with revenue and I’m very concerned that despite the wealth of this nation, all those things that are coming across our borders, going out of our borders, the natural wealth of this county, I’m not satisfied with the revenue that we are collecting.
“We are here to support you to improve many of the good things that you are already doing, getting the container facility in Lae.
“We are here to help work together with other government agencies and departments and development partners so we all achieve what we want in terms of our peoples’ aspirations.
“It’s important to me to come and see where things happen and the people that do the hard work in generating revenue for our budgets so that people like myself, Finance Minister James Marape and the prime minister can spend the money on things like district service improvement programme (DSIP),  provincial service improvement programme (PSIP) funds, free education and issues that we are struggling with at the moment.”