2 Feb 2010

Solomons 2009 surplus hard to repeat, says top accountant

4:11 pm on 2 February 2010

The Solomon Islands top accountant says the government's 2009 surplus was unexpected, and does not indicate there will be an easing of finances this year.

Preliminary figures suggest the government recorded a surplus of about 450,000 US dollars last year.

The Solomons acting accounting general, Donna Hargreaves, says that was thanks to large taxation payments, a pay roll freeze, reducing current expenditure by 10 percent, and prioritising payments.

The result came despite negative forecasts for the Solomon Islands economy.

But Ms Hargreaves says it does not mean this year will be any easier.

"Look I think 2010 will be another difficult year particularly as it will be an election year in the Solomon Islands government. And I think this is reflected in the budget that was brought down in December, for example, pay roll is going to be held at the 2009 level again."

Donna Hargreaves says it doesn't appear the government will have to cut back on services or employees, but they are monitoring the situation.