Former PNG Taxation Review Committee Chairman, Sir Nagora Bogan, says the 2017 tax revenue estimation must be thorough.
It comes when many companies are reporting losses and laying off workers . This is in light of the lack of buoyancy and surplus of cash circulating in the PNG economy.
Sir Nagora estimates that over 30,000 jobs have already been lost.
National budgets are estimations of the cash flow expected by the National Government- a map that shows money we don’t have yet.
If all goes well in 2017, Papua New Guinea will be fine. One area that has seen drastic reform has been taxation.
Former Committee Chairman, Sir Nagora Bogan says estimations of the tax revenue for 2017 must be rigorous.
While, he commends the Government for correcting the punitive tax on housing, he says companies will be struggling to stay afloat next year as workers are laid off.
This will have a drastic effect on how much the government collects on income tax amongst other taxes.
In an interview last week, he called on the government to diversify the economy to cushion the impact of falling oil and mineral prices.
” If we are talking about bringing in investors then we have to be smart about it and also be selective,” Bogan says.
Sir Nagora added that after extensive research and projections of what is in the best interest of the country, presently and in the medium and long term, a submission was made to the National Executive council in October 2015 to review. This is will be the basis before the decisions on reforming tax laws in PNG are made.
In the submission, it asks the government not to add new tax, but to diversify the economy by tapping into the sustainable sectors. This means improving on the existing ones such as Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries and manufacturing.
The Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill has announced at the Mining conference in Sydney that the 2017 budget is geared towards business and investment growth.