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IMF PUTS TRUE COST OF APEC SUMMIT AT K3 BILLION KINA, TO BE FINANCED LARGELY BY DEBT

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by LOWEY INSTITUTE


The 2016 Budget was one of emergency for Papua New Guinea. Adjusting to a 20% collapse in revenue caused by plummeting commodity prices and an economic slow-down, the government has implemented expenditure cuts that are harsher than those contained in Greece’s austerity package. In many ways, the 2016 Budget was the one PNG had to have. While commentators, including myself, have questioned the severity and the way in which cuts have been made, all agree the government could not keep spending at the pace it has been given the collapse in revenue and rapid increases in public debt. But will expenditure actually slow? And what is the true level of public debt in PNG? We can shed some light on these questions by focusing on a specific, big-ticket item of expenditure: PNG’s hosting of the APEC leaders’ meeting in 2018. Port Moresby is going through a massive transformation in preparation for this event, driven by a confusing mixture of public, private and state owned enterpr…