11 Nov 2013

Economists still waiting for budget details in Fiji

2:46 pm on 11 November 2013

Economists and politicians in Fiji say they are still waiting for detailed figures on the country's annual budget announced by regime leader Commodore Frank Bainimarama on Friday.

The Prime Minister's wide-ranging budget speech included plans for free education, substantial pay increases for public servants and investment in health care and housing, financed through the sale of government assets, with tax incentives to promote business and investment.

Several economists and politicians spoken to by Radio New Zealand International say they are waiting for details like the fiscal update and budget estimates before they can make any comment.

The General Secretary for the political party Sodelpa, Pio Tabaiwalu, says it is a vote-buying budget and more information is crucial.

"We're getting news on the grapevine that they are stopping the printing of the budget figures because of trying to change the figures. The government printers should have printed that straight away so that we can make a more critical anaylsis of the budget figures but I heard that has been put on hold and that's very abnormal."

The General Secretary for the political party Sodelpa, Pio Tabaiwalu.