ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Gov’t spending 14.7% short of Q3 target
Government spending in the third quarter of the year was 14.7 percent below what was programmed for the period largely due to lower-than-expected administrative expenditures, the Department of Budget and Management said on Thursday.
Data from the DBM showed the national government disbursements in July to September reached P683.7 billion, reflecting a shortfall of 14.7 percent or P117.4 billion compared with P801.1 billion on program.
The DBM attributed the shortfall to lower-than-expected personnel services expenditures, delays affecting the timing and processing of payments, postponement of the Sangguniang Kabataan and the Barangay Elections, and savings from interest payments and net lending in light of repayments by the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp.
Actual disbursements in the third quarter, however, increased by P45 billion or 7 percent from the same period last year on the back of ramped up spending in infrastructure.
Infrastructure and other capital outlays reached P142.1 billion, up 15.4 percent or P18.9 billion higher year-on-year.
"The growth is faster when compared with the 12.2 percent and 5.9 percent expansion recorded in first and second quarter, respectively, as a result of faster project implementation by the Department of Public Works and Highways," the DBM said.
"We will continue to exert our best efforts to reach our full-year target of P2.909 trillion," Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said.
Year-to-date, government spending reached P2.014 trillion—short of the P2.138 trillion on program by 5.8 percent or P123.3 billion.
"Disbursements are expected to pick up in the fourth quarter, anticipating further increases in infrastructure and other capital outlays; maintenance expenditures from operating expenses of the DepEd and the DSWD; and personnel services, in view of the release of the year-end bonus and cash gift, pension and retirement benefits, as well as performance-based bonus for some agencies whose validation are currently ongoing," the DBM said.
For the first nine months of the year, disbursements grew by 8.3 percent or P154.1 billion higher than the P1.860-trillion posted a year earlier.
"The growth is credited to higher personnel services expense, huge infrastructure and other capital spending, and substantial transfers to local government units," the DBM said. — Ted Cordero/VDS, GMA News
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