PM: 2017 budget ‘measured’


PRIME Minister Peter O’Neill said the 2017 national budget will be “measured and cautious”.
He said the Government would avoid the practice by previous governments of inflating spending prior to a national election to “increase votes”.
O’Neill said he and Treasurer Patrick Pruaitch had “well over a decade of economic governance experience between us”.
“We have been through the good and the bad times, and I know the Treasurer’s budget in 2016 will be the most thoroughly considered in the history of our nation,” he said.
“Our Government will not do what previous Governments have done and try to buy re-election, because we know that we will be re-elected on our merits and achievements over the past five years.
“The electors today are a lot more sophisticated than decades ago. Our citizens see through a sham and they know when politicians are spending money just to try and win votes.
“If any Government thinks they can spend their way to win an election, they are gravely mistaken.”
He said the people understood the unfavourable global economic conditions and that the Government was doing all it could to manage the “foreign pressures”.
“The global economy has taken a massive downturn and so our national income is reduced. People can be rest assured that this will not affect core policy areas,” he said.
“We will make sure that districts are properly funded through their DSIPs and that core services will be delivered.”
He said PNG’s APEC “will be the most cost-effective in the history of the forum, and will be done in a way that does not undermine the policy outcomes of the meetings”.

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