Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch

Elections are adequately funded: O’Neill

He was responding to a statement by Treasury Minister and National Alliance Party parliamentary leader Patrick Pruaitch.

Minister Pruaitch said the ability for police to secure a free and fair election is now being compromised with inadequate funding.  

Pruaitch said, he was shocked to learn last Friday during a meeting with Police Commissioner Gari Baki that the police force had only received K8 million of its K121 million budget allocation for election operations.

“That’s just rubbish,” Prime Minister O’Neill told Loop PNG.    

Loan justifiable, says Pruaitch

Pruaitch said he was supportive of the loan because it would ensure the rural Papua New Guineans had access to clean water supply.

Following the announcement of the loan signing, many have vented their frustrations on social media over the loan and its impact on the economy.

Pruaitch said while it will affect the economy, it was a worthy investment.

New Customs PNG facility launched at Motukea

Present to officiate the launch was Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch and Finance Minister James Marape.

Chief Commissioner for Customs PNG, Ray Paul says the total cost of the examination facility according to the contract cost Customs PNG about K30 million.

Customs PNG has gone into an arrangement with a company where Customs will be leasing the facility on an annual basis to them for the next 10 to 15 years.

“Customs PNG intends to own this after some 10 to 20 years down the line through another understanding with them,” Paul said.

Government in talks to secure K320m for Wewak Hospital

Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch told Parliament this afternoon when responding to a Supplementary Question from East Sepik Governor Sir Michael Somare.

The retiring politician asked if the National Government will allocate funds to support the rotting infrastructures which were built in 1962 by the colonial government.

Pruaitch said there were other commitments but the East Sepik Provincial Government had failed to do follow up to secure funding.  

He gave an example of the offer by the Japanese Government, which the provincial government failed on its part.  

K12 billion industrial park for PNG planned

International news agency, Reuters, reports that a statement emailed to them from Treasurer Patrick Pruaitch, confirmed the signing of the MOU with investors from Shenzen Province, China’s third largest city, worth $4 billion (K11, 979, 634, 621.14).

The MOU paves way for the building of a series of processing and manufacturing plants at two industrial parks in West Sepik Province, in a dense jungle region 30 kms (20 miles) from the Indonesian border.

These includes large-scale processing of timber products, fisheries, cassava and tropical spices at one park.

Pruaitch clears misunderstanding on housing tax

“The 2017 National Budget only extended taxes that have been implemented since 2011 to include two new categories that encompass very high housing rentals.

“Corporate executives with employer provided accommodation where weekly rentals range from K3,001 to K5,000 and those in properties rented for K5,001 or more will pay higher taxes depending on their marginal rates of tax,” Pruaitch said yesterday.

The Treasury Minister said there be no new changes for other workers who have employer provided accommodation.

ICCC notes progress in ‘consumer protection’

This was one of the key areas highlighted by Treasury Minister, Patrick Pruaitch, when presenting to Parliament last week the ICCC’s 2014 and 2015 Audited Reports.

Pruaitch said consumer protection was a key function of the ICCC, but a daunting one given the complexities faced in PNG.

Revenue agencies to improve collection

This will accompany significant taxation measures in the mining and petroleum sector and the logging industry, which are actions undertaken to revamp PNG’s revenue.

K90 million is earmarked for the Internal Revenue Commission (IRC) to resource the state agency to improve compliance and broaden the tax base. The allocation is a 21.6 percent increase (K16 million) from the 2016 appropriation.

Government to announce SWF board in 2017

Treasurer Patrick Pruaitch, when delivering his 2017 Budget speech in Parliament yesterday, said an independent firm has been engaged to carry out a comprehensive executive search in the domestic and international labour market. This is to identify and recommend suitable candidates for appointment as chairman and members of the PNGSWF board.

K250 million allocated to prepare for 2018 APEC Summit

Treasury Minister Patrick Pruaitch today handed down the K12.9 billion 2017 National Budget.

In this year’s budget, APEC Authority received K80 million for APEC security and 2017 National Election security preparations.

The Treasury Minister said the benefits of hosting APEC outweigh the cost. 

“The expenditure on APEC is necessary for any government in the world to host a meeting of this size,” Pruaitch said.