Senate starts 2013 budget deliberations

CALLING it as an empowerment budget, Senator Franklin Drilon started the deliberation of P2.006 trillion national expenditures for 2013 with a hope to pass it before Christmas break.

“The proposed 2013 budget is more than about the national government’s expenditures and sources of financing for next year. It is the keystone to good governance in all its many facets — from basic social services to national security, from inclusive economic growth to peace and the rule of law, from disaster prevention and crisis management to anti-corruption and participatory governance,” Drilon said.

Last July 24, 2012, President Benigno Aquino III submitted to the 15th Congress his administration’s proposed P2.006-trillion national budget for 2013, which the lower House approved with revisions on third and final reading on October 15, 2012.

“This august Chamber now assumes the task of ensuring that the budget will meet the nation’s most urgent needs and that public funds are managed prudently and judiciously,” he said.

The President’s Budget is anchored on a real GDP growth rate of 6.0 to 7.0 percent, inflation rate of 3.0 to 5.0 percent, and the 364-day T-Bill rate also at 3.0 to 5.0 percent. The exchange rate is projected at P42 to P45 against the dollar, while crude oil prices are projected in the neighborhood of US$90 to $110 in 2012 as well as 2013.

For 2013, the national government plans to further trim the fiscal deficit to just 2 percent of GDP. To support the 2013 budget, the government will raise total revenues of P1.78 trillion. It also projects a 13.8 percent tax effort, up from an expected 13.3 percent in 2012. The government’s total outstanding debt in 2013 will amount to P5.8 trillion or less than half of the GDP compared to a 54.8 percent debt to GDP ratio in 2009.

Slicing the Budget Pie

In its proposal, the Palace submitted to Congress for review and approval Total New Appropriations of P1,368.329 Billion.  With Automatic Appropriations of P755.219 billion less the Unprogrammed Fund of P117.548 billion, Total Obligations will amount to P2. 006 trillion.

Appropriations                                                                            (In Billion Pesos)

New General Appropriations                                               P 1,368.329
Automatic Appropriations                                                          755.219
Total Available Appropriations                                            2,123.548
Less:   Unused Appropriations/
Unobligated Allotments                                                               117.548
Total Obligations                                                                      P 2,006.000

The biggest share of 34.8 percent in the 2013 national budget will go to social services, while economic services is second with 25.5 percent. On the other hand, the share of our debt-servicing burden will fall to 16.6 percent next year from 18.3 percent in 2012.

General public services will have a 17.3 percent share while defense will get 4.5 percent.

Top ten agencies got the highest budget were:

  1. Department of Education, P292.7 B
  2. Department of Public Works and Highways, P152.9B
  3. Department of National Defense -P121.6 B
  4. Department of Interior and Local Governments – P121.1 B
  5. Department of Agriculture, P74.1 B
  6. Department of Health, P56.8 B
  7. Department of Social Welfare and Development, P56.2 B
  8. Department of Transportation and Communications, P37.1 B
  9. Department of Finance, P33.2 B
  10. Department of Environment and Natural Resources, P23.7 B

Drilon also said that Corporate Operating Budgets of the National Electrification Administration (NEA), the National Power Corporation (NPC), and the Philippine National Oil Company (PNOC) have also been submitted to Congress for approval, pursuant to Section 13, Chapter III of R.A. No. 7638 or the Department of Energy Act of 1992.

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