NATIONAL BUDGET THEME UNVEILED

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The National Government has unveiled the 2021 National Budget Theme: “Towards a Path to Economic Recovery: Advancing Growth and Services Delivery Through Better Partnerships”.

The Government aims to implement this theme under the two overarching redirection policy commitments, which aims to protect the citizens of Solomon Islands from the spread of COVID 19 pandemic and to keep the domestic economy afloat and to accelerate recovery.

A statement from the Ministry of Finance today (16 Feb) said the 2021 Budget Strategy provides the framework for the Democratic Coalition Government for Advancement (DCGA) to implement the redirection policy.

The 2021 Development Budget will inject more resources into the productive and resource sectors and engaging in developing key infrastructures. This is to ensure economic recovery from the shocks of the negative impact of COVID 19 and to sustain the economy.

The statement said the 2021 Development Budget would build on the significant early positive results from the implementation of the Economic Stimulus Package Policy since June 2020.

“Government maintains its commitment to protect the economy regardless of the impacts of covid-19 since 2020 as a result of the prudent financial and economic management measures applied during these challenging times. Early trading numbers and revised economic modelling all pointed towards positive impact of the package in our economy,” the statement said.

The government will continue to build on these achievements in the 2021 budget with more spending on efforts to containment the virus from spreading into communities.

So far, the government has equipped almost all the provinces with COVID- 19 testing machines and the decentralization of the testing capabilities will ease the pressure of testing in Honiara.

The statement added that while the budget will focus on the economy and the social sector (health), the budget will also address the loose ends and tightened where funds have gone without any returns some of which have already being implemented such as imposing austerity measures and freezing recruitment into the public service cadre.

Hearings by Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is currently underway as the committee scrutinized budget biddings made by government ministries, and in line with the relevant laws, at the completion of the hearing the PAC is expected to hand its report before parliament.

Government is expected to table this year’s budget in March.

– GCU, OPMC

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