Should consider MVR78 million GMR payment as a loan: Auditor General

Hussain Fiyaz Moosa, Haveeru Online
Dec 20, 2012 - 01:36
  • Auditor General Niyaz Ibrahim speaking at the Parliament's Finance Committee. PHOTO/ NASRULLA SOLIH

Auditor General Niyaz Ibrahim has advised to consider the MVR78 million upfront payment made by GMR Infrastructure Limited that had operated the Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA) as a loan given by Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL) to the government.

The expertise provided by the Auditor General in relation to next year's budget detailed that in accounting practice, the payment made by GMR is as an advance received by MACL. Hence that amount must be classified as a loan taken by the Finance Ministry, Auditor General said.

Niyaz further said the funds must be accounted for as an advance payment in the MACL balance sheet and must be divided for the duration of 25 years in the GMR contract.

Though GMR has paid the amount to the government “as MACL is a separate legal entity and the government is a shareholder of the company, MACL has to pay only a dividend to the government,” he added.

The Auditor General further advised to stop the presently planned Public Sector Investment Program (PSIP).

In that regard, he explained that though the purpose of PSIP is to centralize the population and development, the projects scheduled for next year are not proposals for the development of Maldives.

MVR1 billion would be the cost of 231 new projects for next year, more than MVR3 billion would be spent on 2014 and 2015, according to the Auditor General. Hence, without drafting a development plan and a population and development centralization plan, to implement the proposed new projects would hinder the progress of the Maldives economy, development and the financial system, he said.

Niyaz stressed on the importance of a law that prevents the change of a population and development centralization policy with every change of government.

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