Gov’t to reprioritize expenditures

Prime Minister James Marape says the Government will reprioritize expenditures and cut activities that can be deferred or terminated.

Focus will be on health, the economy and education for the balance of 2020.

He said to make sure there is no local transmissions in the country, the Government had instituted a State of Emergency (SoE) for 14 days, the incubation period of COVID-19, to monitor any reports of possible COVID-19 infections.

“The Government will reprioritize expenditures and cutaway activities that can be deferred or terminated and focus on health, economy and education for the balance of 2020.”

With roadblocks, and isolation initiatives implemented by provincial governments, the public and private sector, the government is determined to ensure the virus is contained if in the case another case is reported in the country.

“The Government is doing all it can to make sure our people are safe from this pandemic COVID 19.

“We cannot sacrifice a life and we will do anything to keep our people save,” he said.

Citizens are being reminded again to stay indoors, and practice safe hygiene practices.

Meantime, the Government has requested $US50 million loan from the Asian Development Bank to assist with COVID-19.

Treasurer Ian Ling-Stuckey said in a statement, that the ADB is looking favorably on that request.

Minister Ling-Stuckey also stated there was also an earlier discussion with staff on the technical aspects of the IMF program and the request for $US182 million.

He said work is being done to rapidly advance this request for funding to help with current foreign exchange and cash flow shortages in the country.

In addition, the Treasurer said work is ongoing also on the World Bank’s $US20 million in assistance, including streamlined procurement arrangements.

Freddy Mou