Duterte declares P246.28 billion savings for coronavirus measures

Aika Rey
Duterte declares P246.28 billion savings for coronavirus measures
Of the P246.28 billion total savings, the budget department releases P148.93 billion to concerned agencies to be used for pandemic response

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has declared P246.28 billion worth of savings, as part of the Philippines’ coronavirus warchest.

The 4th weekly report submitted to Congress on Monday, April 20, said the total P246.28 billion came from “pooled savings from various sources,” as of April 16. The amount is P56.46 billion higher than P189.82 billion, the previously identified amount in the part reports.

Of the P246.28 billion, some P148.93 billion has been released by the Department of Budget and Management to concerned agencies.

The April 20 report, unlike the previous ones, did not identify which agencies received the additional funds.

According to the 3rd weekly report, the DBM had released some P132.32 billion in cash allocations to the social welfare (P100 billion) and labor (P1.5 billion) departments, and the Bayanihan grant to cities and municipalites (P30.82 billion). It’s unclear where the remaining P16.61 billion went.

Malacañang on Monday said a total of P5.690 billion in additional allotments and P7.789 billion in cash allocations went to the existing programs of the health, social welfare, science and technology, labor, national defense, and justice departments. Likewise, it did not specifiy the amounts for each one. (READ: What we know so far: Funding the fight vs the coronavirus)

The April 20 report also said the Department of Education identified some P2.82 billion while the Department of Trade and Industry-Small Business Corporation reallocated P500 million from their budgets to deal with coronavirus. It did not expound on which program it was sourced from and where exactly it will be used.

Some P100.22 billion was certified by the Bureau of Treasury to cover the cash requirements for coronavirus measures. These came from the dividends collected from the government-owned and controlled corporations.

List of properties submitted

GOCC Power Sector and Assets Liabilities Management Corporation (PSALM) submitted a list of real properties it owns to the energy and finance departments.

PSALM is the second GOCC to do so, next to Philippine Guarantee Corporationafter President Rodrigo Duterte said he would sell government assets as “last resort” to raise funds for pandemic response.

PSALM had also released its share in taxes to host communities, benefitting 6 provinces, two cities, 15 municipalities, and 80 barangays. The April 20 report did not specify the breakdown.

The weekly report on the implementation of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act is part of Congress’ requirements for Malacañang.

The Bayanihan law took effect on March 26 and will be valid for 3 months, or until June, unless extended by Congress or lifted by a congressional concurrent resolution or presidential proclamation. 

Read the full report below:

 

– Rappler.com

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Aika Rey

Aika Rey is a business reporter for Rappler. She covered the Senate of the Philippines before fully diving into numbers and companies. Got tips? Find her on Twitter at @reyaika or shoot her an email at aika.rey@rappler.com.