2018 Budget to focus on Economic Growth

National Planning and Monitoring Minister, Richard Maru, says the 2018 Budget will focus on economic growth on the back of the agriculture sector.

Minister Maru said this on Wednesday in Day Three of the Inaugural National Agriculture Summit in Port Moresby.

The Minister said the 2018 Budget will see funding for economic growth double, with a major focus on Agriculture.

Speaking to industry stakeholders, Maru said under his tenure as Minister for Planning, Agriculture will take the front seat in development.

He said the he plans for the sector to overshadow the extractive industry which has for too long been given prominence, but has not translated into positive economic growth.

“In the 2018 budget which will be delivered next week, you will see a massive shift in the priority of Government. Economic growth is the priority of our government. Yes we will still build hospitals, we still build roads, but the focus will be on economic growth. And the funding for the sector has doubled.

He added “We need to build a bigger economy and that will be anchored on agriculture.”

Minister Maru said the Government was now more strategic in its approach to investing in key infrastructure nexr year.

He said this will lay the foundations for growth in the next five years.

Minister Maru told private sector participants that the Governments was keen to work with them to  see growth in the sector.

Cedric Patjole