Export earnings to stay high

Business, Normal

THE country’s export earnings are poised to remain high in average in gold, copper palm oil and coffee, while financial developments have shown an overall growth in all aspects of the country’s economy, according to the 2010 June Quarterly Economic Bulletin.
Bank of PNG governor Loi Bakani said in the bulletin that the weaker global growth expectations had contained commodity prices somewhat over recent months, especially in crude oil.
He said since end of June, international prices of PNG’s major export commodities showed mixed trends, with gold and oil prices fluctuated but returned to their levels while copper, palm oil and coffee prices had increased.
Bakani said the anticipated contribution of the Ramu nickel-cobalt production had been put on delay by various legal issues.
Construction work on the LNG project will increase imports, which can offset the surplus in the current account.
However, there have been reported delays in some aspects of the construction work and import growth may not be as high as expected.
Bakani said higher export commodity prices should lead to higher corporate taxes for the government this year, with a budget surplus reported for the first six months of this year.
This is expected to be appropriated through a supplementary budget for this year.