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As part of The PNG Promoting Effective Public Expenditure Project, we conducted an extensive nationwide expenditure tracking survey of more than 360 schools and health facilities. Fieldwork was conducted from September to December 2012, where survey teams travelled to some of PNG’s most rural and remote locations in order to complete over 1276 separate surveys.
The provinces surveyed were as follows:
- Southern (Papua) region: Gulf, National Capital District
- Highlands region: Enga, Eastern Highlands
- Momase region: West Sepik (Sandaun), Morobe
- Islands region: West New Britain, East New Britain
PEPE researchers from NRI and ANU went back to surveyed provinces in August 2013 to share results from the survey. We verified much of the data with the help of the provinces who also assisted us to interpret some of the results and implications of the findings.
Preliminary findings from the surveys were first publically released at our Budget Forum held on 19 September 2013 at NRI in Port Moresby. The presentations were entitled ‘PNG’s Lost Decade?’ as we compared our survey findings to a similar survey conducted by NRI and the World Bank more than ten years ago in 2002 (reported in Public Expenditure and Service Delivery Survey 2002).
The PEPE project and ongoing research through expenditure case studies will help to fill critical data gaps about the progress (or lack of it) made over the last decade in the delivery of government services, during which the resources boom has tripled PNG government revenue, and a number of important expenditure reforms have been undertaken.