DBM submits proposed P4.5-T proposed national budget to Congress

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 26, 2020   •   266

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has submitted the Fiscal Year 2021 National Expenditure Program (NEP) of P4.506 trillion to Congress.

The 2021 proposed National Budget is 9.9% higher compared with this year’s ₱4.1-trillion appropriations.

The DBM said the proposed budget went through numerous hearings and consultations with different government agencies. The theme of the proposed budget, according to the department, is “Reset, Rebound, and Recover: Investing for Resiliency and Sustainability”.

Personnel Services will corner the bulk of the FY 2021 NEP at 29.2% or P1.32 trillion to accommodate the additional hiring of health workers under the Human Resource for Health Program of the Department of Health (DOH) amid the fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

“The FY 2021 NEP will prioritize health-related COVID-19 response programs to address the continuing threat of the pandemic,” the DBM said in a statement.

This also includes the second tranche implementation of the Salary Standardization law, and the increased pension requirements of military and uniformed personnel.

Capital outlays has the second highest with P920.5 billion or 20.4% of the proposed budget. Maintenance, Operating and Other Expenditures will amount to P699.4 billion, Debt Burden with P560.2 billion, Support to Government-Owned and -Controlled Corporations with P157.5 billion, and Tax Expenditures with P14.5 billion.

Meanwhile, the Department of Education (DepEd) remains the top agency with the biggest slice from the proposed budget, with an allocation of P754.4 billion. This is followed by DPWH with a proposed budget of P667.3 billion.

The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) has a proposed budget of P246.1 billion, the Department of National Defense (DND) with P209.1 billion, the DOH with P203.1 billion (including the budget for the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation). AAC

PH policy limiting advance payments to 15% may hamper COVID-19 vaccine procurement – DBM chief

Robie de Guzman   •   February 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Wendel Avisado on Friday raised the need to increase the 15-percent limitation on advance payments on the contract amount for the purchase of COVID-19 vaccines amid government preparations for the roll-out of its inoculation plans.

Avisado said raising the down payment limit will “ensure the timely and efficient implementation of the COVID-19 vaccination plan.”

Memorandum Order No. 172, s. 2005 only allows advance payment not exceeding 15% of the contract amount for procurement of goods required to address contingencies arising from natural or man-made calamities in areas where a “State of Calamity” has been declared by appropriate authorities.

Avisado said the government is presently experiencing difficulties in negotiating with various pharmaceutical companies due to the limitations imposed under existing laws.

“…Currently, pwede ka lang magbayad o mag advance payment hanggang 15%… Ang gusto ng mga pharmaceutical industries, bayaran mo na… I-aadvance mo na ang payment bago ma-ideliver… In other words, talagang tatalunin tayo ng mga mayayamang bansa,” Avisado said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Avisado called for greater patience and understanding from the public regarding the vaccine procurement process.

He stressed that the government cannot divulge specific details on its negotiations with pharmaceutical companies—such as prices and the manners of delivery—as both parties are bound by a confidentiality agreement.

However, he assured that all of the transactions made by the government remain legitimate and honest.

The government is also committed to ensure the safe and timely procurement, transportation, and administration of COVID-19 vaccines despite all of the limitations and challenges, he added.

“Bigyan natin ng pagkakataon naman ang ating pamahalaan na makalap muna at makakuha ng vaccine. Kasi hindi pa man nangyayari yan, ay katakot-takot na batikos ang naririnig natin, meron po mga pamamaraan dyan, kung saan makikita’t makikita natin kung meron talagang kalokohan,” Avisado said.

The DBM chief also reassured the public that the budget for the said vaccines has already been allocated and is now ready for release.

He likewise welcomed and acknowledged the efforts of various local government units across the country for complementing and cooperating with the national government in its efforts to secure the much-needed vaccines.

“Meron tayong pondo dyan…. P82.5B ang inilaan ng ating pamahalaan. Wag po tayong mag worry. Nakikipagtulungan ang mga local government units natin at sila din ay handa na bumili sa abot ng kanilang makakaya. We appreciate that very much po,” Avisado said.

Duterte to veto items in the proposed 2021 national budget

Aileen Cerrudo   •   December 25, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte is expected to veto several items in the proposed 2021 national budget, the Palace confirmed on Friday (December 25).

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque Jr. said the ceremonial signing for the P4.5 trillion national budget is scheduled for Monday (December 28). The Palace official, however, did not disclose which items in the national budget will be vetoed by the President.

“Sigurado po na magkakaroon po ng veto message. Pero I am not at liberty to discuss po kung ano itong mga items na ito (I am sure there will be a veto message, but I am not at liberty to discuss what theses items are),” he said.

The education sector will receive the bulk of the budget with P708.2 billion, followed by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) with P694.8 billion. Meanwhile the country’s health sector will receive P287.5 billion. AAC

President Duterte may sign nat’l budget on Dec. 23 or 28—Roque

Aileen Cerrudo   •   December 19, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte may sign the 2021 national budget on December 23 or 28, according to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque Jr.

Roque confirmed that Malacañang has received a copy of the proposed P4.5-trillion budget for 2021 from Congress.

The submitted budget also includes the allocation for the government’s response against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as well as for the economic recovery of the country.

The bulk of the national budget, amounting to P708.18 billion, will be given to the Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on Higher Education (CHED), state universities and colleges, and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

Meanwhile, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will receive P694.82 billion, which can be used for rehabilitating roads and public infrastructure affected by the previous typhoons.

The Department of Health (DOH) and the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation will get P287.47 billion.

The Palace official also assured that the President will thoroughly review the budget before signing. AAC

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