The theme of the 2022 National Budget is “Lightening the Burden,” but some of the measures to take in the projected revenue of K16.1billion, could add burden to the people.
One such measure is the introduction of the Banking Levy of K190 million, which is considered to impact people, especially the contributors of superfunds.
According to Mr. Andrew Oaeke, the Acting Deputy Secretary Economic Policy of the Department of Treasury, there are a set of revenue measures that will be used to get that revenue in 2022.
“They are categorized in three areas of Revenue Raising, Revenue Policies to Promote Fairness and Equity, and Enhancing Tax Administration and Compliance. There are thirteen of them, but we are categorizing them into three broad areas,” he said.
Of the three areas, the introduction of the Banking Levy along with the introduction of Telecommunication Levy, comes under Revenue Raising.
The Association of Superannuation Funds of Papua New Guinea (PNG) is one party not in favour of this introduction of the Banking Levy, saying it would hurt the contributors in the end.
In a statement, the association said that this decision will affect Bank South Pacific Group (BSP), whom superannuation funds on behalf of ordinary workers and taxpayers are major investors and shareholders and claim that this new banking levy will result in a decline in profitability, dividend payments to shareholders and a decline in BSP’s share price.
“We are cognizant of the Government’s endeavours to raise more revenue internally and will support initiatives that achieves this objective but not at the expense of our members, the ordinary workers of this country who are already doing it tough. Retirement savings with the Superfunds are the only real means of financial protection workers have.”