There is a need for Papua New Guineans to thoroughly discuss the management of the
government’s share of the mineral, oil, and gas revenues. Papua New Guinea has experienced two major mining booms since independence. As noted in the 2009 Pacific Economic Bulletin’s economic survey of the PNG economy, the first of these booms in the
early 1990s was managed very poorly, with government expenditure greatly exceeding
revenues. This resulted in a large increase in public debt and the devaluation and eventual floating of the kina. The recent commodity boom has been managed more effectively, with the paying down of public debt and the setting aside in trust funds of some of the windfall revenues for future expenditure on long-overdue refurbishment of important public infrastructure and development of essential services. Unfortunately, there has been also sharply increased recurrent expenditure; and currently there is some doubt about how well
the windfall revenues set aside in trust funds have subsequently been managed.
Whether the setting aside of the windfall revenues in various designated trust funds
was a good idea or not, it was an ad hoc reaction to the receipt of the commodity
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