Projected at over K600 million, ENB Governor and Chairman of Finance in the Provincial Executive Council (PEC), Michael Marum, said the first pillar on ‘Making optimal use of available resources’ will get over K52 million.
“The second pillar of ‘Promoting economic development through primary and secondary processing’ is given just over K40m, while the third pillar on ‘Encouraging community participation and promoting family life’ will get over K30m,” he said on February 6th.
“More than K27m is set aside for the fourth pillar on ‘Making rural life more attractive’, over K70m has been allocated for the fifth pillar on ‘Lessening disparities’, the sixth pillar on ‘Improving the effectiveness of LLGs’ will get the biggest support of more than K80m, with the seventh pillar of ‘Minimising law and order’ to get just over K6m.”
The seven development pillars are captured in the nine Strategic Result Areas (SRA) for implementation at each of the government levels; from the provincial headquarters right down to the ward level.
“Of the nine SRAS, the infrastructure sector is allocated over K407m, making up 70 percent of the provincial budget this year,” Marum said.
Major projects featured in this year’s budget include the Provincial Civic Centre, which will get K2 million in support, an Information and Communication Technology connectivity program, several road accessibility projects which include infrastructure set up for the five new LLGs and the Kokopo Rabaul Infrastructure (KRID) Program.
The Special Economic Zones have been given a massive K77 million investment by the national government this year, the agriculture sector and downstream processing will get over K32m in support, and K1m to be allocated again for SMEs through the provincial government’s SME loan scheme.
There will be focus on sectors like tourism this year, and continued education interventions with a funding allocation of K2.2m, more than K17 million for law and order, with continued assistance in the health and community development sectors, sports and recreation and land mobilisation.
“In this term of Government, we will set up an ENB Land Trust Board, with the aim to protect illegal acquisition of customary land and to facilitate mobilisation of customary land for economic projects,” said the Governor.
He said the government is also looking at setting up an ENB Provincial Water Authority, tasked to guide a water project that is aimed at providing access to safe, clean and potable water.
Also included are road maintenance and upgrading, and the revitalisation of the Rural Electrification (RE) program in the province.
“Themed ‘Fostering sustainable livelihoods at the wards, through partnerships for economic growth and development,’ the 2023 budget strikes a balance between addressing today’s pressing needs and the critical investments needed for tomorrow,” said Governor Marum.