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Govt vows to complete draft amendments to Budget Law next year

Secretary for Economy and Finance Francis Tam Pak Yuen said Wednesday the government would complete drafting amendments to the Budget Law next year and in future all information on spending on large-scale public construction projects will be submitted to the legislature for analysis and discussion. Tam made the pledge during yesterday’s Q&A session in the […]

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UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 5:53 am

Secretary for Economy and Finance Francis Tam Pak Yuen said Wednesday the government would complete drafting amendments to the Budget Law next year and in future all information on spending on large-scale public construction projects will be submitted to the legislature for analysis and discussion.

Tam made the pledge during yesterday’s Q&A session in the legislature.

During the plenary session in the legislature’s hemicycle, several lawmakers slammed the government for its overspending on a raft of large-scale public construction projects.

Directly-elected lawmakers Antonio Ng Kuok Cheong, Chan Wai Chi and Au Kam San, key members of the grassroots New Macau Association (NMA), asked why the government often overspends on large-scale public construction, projects such as the repeatedly delayed Pac On Ferry Terminal project. They also asked how to improve the situation and whether any current regulations needed to be amended.

The three lawmakers are running for re-election next month.

Responding to the lawmakers, Tam said the government had already started working on the draft amendments.

“Although the law has been amended many times it still fails to meet the reality of society…. The government will complete the draft of the amendments to the law next year,” Tam was quoted by The Macau Post Daily as saying.

Tam also said that in future the government would report to the legislature not only about the mid-term performance of its budgets, but also inform lawmakers about any significant discrepancies between the original budget for large-scale construction projects and the actual expenditure on them.

“Regarding some of the big public construction projects …if some of the key elements of a project such as the design or construction size change, resulting in changes to the original budget, the bureaus will evaluate the changes immediately and inform the legislature in due course,” Tam promised.(macaunews)

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 5:53 am

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