Arakan State Budget Shows 20 Billion Kyat Deficit

Sittwe: The budget for western Burma’s Arakan State for fiscal year 2011 – 2012 shows a deficit of 20 billion Kyat, said Dr. Aye Maung, Chairman of the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party, the leading political party in the region.

Picture of Byala posted in the Arakan State.

“We found a deficit of 20 billion Kyat in our Arakan State budget for this fiscal year when we reviewed the budget. This kind of deficit in our state’s budget was also found in the former eras as well,” said Dr. Aye Maung.

He said that the deficit was found after the budget for the state was handed over to the regional government by the central government for this year.

“It is now very important for our regional government how it will meet the 20 billion Kyat deficit in its budget. That is why we have to demand from the central government to share some of the profits that are being obtained from the Shwe Gas Project in our region,” he said.

It was learned that the regional government in Arakan State is facing the deficit because the central government has monopolized the natural resources, including gas, and all foreign investment in the region without portioning any profit of revenue to the regional government.

Moreover, the central government is still reluctant to share some profits from the Shwe Gas Project, the largest in the state, for regional development.

“We hope that China will be developed after taking gas from our Arakan State for 30 years, and that it would help for our local development in our state as well. We would continue to engage with all the responsible parties involved in the businesses in our region for the funding and other related issues necessary for our regional development,” said Dr. Aye Maung.