2 Apr 2014

PNG urged to narrow gap between rich and poor

2:43 pm on 2 April 2014

Papua New Guinea has been warned of the need to narrow the gap between rich and poor with skyrocketing growth predicted for next year.

This comes in a major new report on the region's economy.

Sally Round reports.

"The Asia Development Bank's flagship economic report forecasts a record 21 percent growth rate for PNG in 2015. The rapid growth is due to the start of gas exports later this year and the first full year of production next year. But the bank warns the nearly 40% increase in government spending over the last year on infrastructure, health, education and law and order is not having the effect it could. And it says marginalised provinces in PNG in particular are missing out because of poor prioritising by local governments and unpredictable funding from national coffers. The ADB recommends improving the accountability of local authorities and better systems to get services to the people."