Just before Christmas (24 December) the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG) passed its K439 million budget for 2020.
The theme for this year’s budget is: Focusing on Post Referendum.
The financial plan included new funding commitments announced by PNG’s prime minister James Marape during his recent visit to Bougainville.
Of the budget’s allocated funds, K338 million will come from national government grants with K30.49 million coming from internally generated revenue and K3.6 million in donor funds.
In terms of big-ticket funding items, K100 million has been earmarked for road infrastructure and a further K50 million for restoration and development grants. K39 million will go towards economic development and K13 million for other infrastructure.
In-line with the budget theme, K10 million has been allocated to support post referendum dialogue and consultation and K9 million for peace initiatives, while K7 million will be used for the upcoming ABG elections.
The ABG says that as a result of increased development expenditure there would be improved services delivery in terms of better roads, more police personnel, schools and healthcare.
The budget shows that K8 million has been earmarked each for education and health with K6 million for policing, while K11 million has been allocated to support the running of government and administration.
The ABG is separately looking to foster growth internally within key sectors such as mining, tourism and agriculture in order to increase internally generated revenue and therefore levels of economic self-reliance.