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2024 ABG Budget: Balancing Priorities, Emphasizing Independence, and Ensuring Transparency

The Bougainville House of Representatives today passed the 2024 ABG Budget.

ABG Minister for Finance Hon. Robin Wilson tabled the Budget Statement yesterday in parliament where he provided a comprehensive run down on Bougainville’s financial landscape.

The ABG 2024 Budget estimate is K761,186,600.00 and encompasses various revenue sources, including grants, miscellaneous funds, allocations under provincial and local level government laws, and internal revenue.

  • K537.2M in grants specified under the Organic Law on Peace Building in Bougainville,
  • K15M in Miscellaneous,
  • K158.2M in funding allocations under the organic law on provincial and local level government,
  • K50,724,000 in Bougainville’s own internal revenue

Minister Wilson explained that the budget was prepared in consistency with guiding documents such as the Bougainville Peace Agreement, the Organic Law on Peace Building in Bougainville 2002, the Organic Law on Provincial Governments and Local Level Governments 1995, the Bougainville Constitution, and the six-point strategy of the Toroama-Nisira Government.

Further to this, the 2024 ABG Budget has been categorized based on the application of two key Organic Laws – the Organic Law on Peace-building in Bougainville (ABG & Bougainville Referendum 2002) and the Organic Law on Provincial and Local Level Government 1995.

“The purpose of categorizing according to the different Organic Laws is to clearly differentiate what funds are under the control of the ABG and what funds are not,” Minister Wilson explained.

Minister Wilson also explained in parliament that the Budget allocated funds separately among the three arms of government under the Executive, Legislature and Judiciary to ensure a balanced and transparent distribution of resources fostering accountability and efficiency.

The 2024 ABG Budget expenditure is broken down into two main budget components:

  • Recurrent: with an expenditure estimated at K206.9M
  • Development: with an expenditure estimated at K554.3M

“In the 2024 Development Budget, the expenditures for the constitutionally guaranteed development grant of Restoration and Development Grants (RDG), and the inter-government funding of Prime Minister’s Commitment to ABG, are structured to reflect the development priorities of the ABG under each of the revised functional sectors in the Bougainville Integrated Strategic Development Plan 2023-2027.”

“The major expenditure focus areas of the 2024 ABG Budget are on Bougainville’s priorities towards building strong economic policies and highly effective work programs aimed at developing capacity and progressing government initiatives towards independence-preparedness.”

The development funding allocation is summarized as:

  • Government, Public Service and Independence Readiness Sector: K27,773,000.00 (27%)
  • Law and Justice Sector: K11,260,000.00 (11%)
  • Health and Education Sector: K16,840,000.00 (17%)
  • Research, Science Technology and Innovation Sector: K610,000.00 (1%)
  • Infrastructure Sector: K8,120,000 (8%)
  • Economic Sector: K27, 978,000.00 (28%)
  • Social Sector: K8,419,000.00 (8%)

Other key changes to the 2024 ABG Budget covers the inclusion of parliamentary services in the distribution of 290 recurrent grants and equal funding to all constituencies.

“For the first time, the Toroama-Nisira Government is distributing equal funding to all constituencies. In doing so, it envisages to put more focus on development with the people by the people in their respective constituencies.”

Minister Wilson reiterated that although Bougainville received a massive allocation from the National Government when it handed down the National Budget in November this year, not all the allocations in the National Budget will be remitted to the ABG due to the application and administering of two different Organic Laws.

However, Minister Wilson highlighted that the 2024 ABG Budget reflects the policy initiatives of the Toroama-Nisira Government, emphasizing independence, transparency, and marks the government's commitment to the people of Bougainville and their development priorities.

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