New State-Owned Enterprise Act for Kiribati

TARAWA, KIRIBATI – The Asian Development Bank (ADB) welcomes the passage yesterday of the State Owned Enterprises (SOE) Act. ADB and the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) supported drafting of the legislation, which was prepared following extensive local consultations.

“Passing the SOE Act is a strong statement by Government to improve performance of the SOE sector. Working together with AusAID under the leadership of Government we have made significant progress on SOE reform as well as creating an environment for public private partnerships and more investment by the private sector in the Kiribati economy,” said Adrian Ruthenberg, Regional Director of ADB’s Pacific Subregional Office in Suva, Fiji.

The Act, an activity under the Economic Management and Public Sector Reform Technical Assistance (TA) project, was introduced as part of the Government of Kiribati’s firm commitment to improving public financial management, including the management and performance of SOEs.

The TA, which is also helping government with good budget policies and public financial management, is financed through an $800,000 grant by Japan Special Fund, funded by the Government of Japan, with co-financing of $1.5 million from AusAID.

Public sector management is a core focus area of ADB’s development strategy for the Pacific region. ADB is supporting the efforts of ADB Pacific developing member countries to encourage sustainable and inclusive economic growth.

ADB has provided eight loan projects amounting to $34.70 million, and more than 40 technical assistance projects worth $17.40 million to Kiribati since 1974.