Polye: We’ve more jobs

Business, Normal

The National, Friday August 2nd, 2013

 PAPUA New Guinea’s total employment has remained fairly strong in line with developments in the domestic economy, according to the Mid Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) Report released yesterday by Treasurer Don Polye.

“PNG’s total employment has remained fairly strong in line with developments in the domestic economy,” the report said.

“Total employment grew by 5.5% through the year to March quarter this year, reflecting continued growth in the non-mining sector while employment moderated in the mining sector.

“The through-the-year growth showed the non-mining sector employment grew strongly by 7.4% in the March quarter compared to 4.7% recorded in the March quarter last year, an increase of 2.7 percentage points. 

“The strong non-mining sector employment is driven primarily by the strong growth in the retail (up 19%), building and construction (up 14.5%), manufacturing (up 10.5%) and wholesale sectors (up 8.1%). 

“Employment in mining, which includes gas and oil, grew by 3.8% through the year in the March quarter 2013 compared to 3.2% recorded in the corresponding period of 2012. 

“There was significant employment growth in the second half of 2012, but this is being slowed in the first quarter of 2013. 

“The recent moderation reflects major mines looking at cost cutting measures for their operations following the fall in commodity prices.”

The report also highlighted:

  • At Budget time (last year), Treasury projected inflation in 2013 to be around 8% reflective of the Government stimulus spending. 

This has been revised down to 5.6% taking into account the low 2012 inflation outcome of 2.2%, weak global economic activities, falling commodity prices, low and stable inflation in major trading partner countries and the lagged impact of the appreciation of the Kina exchange rate; and

  • In the March quarter 2013, the current account showed a deficit of K1.265 billion, compared to a deficit of K1.588 billion in the previous quarter. This improvement was largely due to a narrowing of the income deficit to K135 billion offsetting the modest widening of the trade and transfer deficits to K1.117 billion and K12.5 million respectively. 

This is due largely to very low dividend payments during the quarter including lower payments for service and merchandise imports.