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ALOFI, Niue (August 29th, 2000 – Niue Economic Review)---Niue's NZ $20 million (US$ 8,617,460) budget has been passed by the Legislative Assembly.

But tighter control on aid from New Zealand and a fall in local revenue has resulted in a predicted NZ $1.5 million (US$ 646,310) deficit.

Public expenditure committee chairman Hima Takelesi says by adding last year's deficit to the current shortfall the government faces a massive NZ$ 2.6 million (US$ 1,120,270) blowout at the end of the current fiscal year.

During the three-day budget debate opposition members criticized what they called the government's handout mentality, and challenged the necessity of past pension and child allowance increases and current subsidies on petrol.

The Premier's departmental travel allowances were also under the spotlight.

Niue has a population of 1,700 people and is self governing in free association with New Zealand.



ALOFI, Niue (August 30, 2000 – Niue Economic Review)---Niue's Premier Sani Lakatani is being installed today as the 11th Chancellor of the University of the South Pacific.

The ceremony will take place at Niue High School where 13 teachers are on strike over a pay dispute with the government.

Heads of USP member countries in the South Pacific are appointed Chancellor on a rotating basis.

Before the 64-year-old Premier is installed, the USP Center building will be officially opened. It has hi tech satellite networking equipment that allows students on Niue to take part in lectures and tutorials from Suva and at other regional centers

For additional reports from the Niue Economic Review, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Magazines/Journals/Niue Economic Review.

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