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30 March 2012

DBM released 91.3% of 2012 National Budget

Sustaining the high momentum of fund releases set earlier this year, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has released 91.3% of this year’s budget for government agencies as of end-February, with P793 billion already released from the P869 billion earmarked for agency expenditures under the 2012 National Budget.
“The swift pace of our budget releases affirms the Aquino administration’s commitment of ensuring the quick delivery of critical goods and services to the public, particularly the poorest and most marginalized. The releases will enable all government departments and agencies to implement key projects and programs within—or even ahead of—their respective schedules for this fiscal year,” Budget and Management Secretary Florencio B. Abad said.
Under the budget set for various departments of the National Government, releases for Personal Services reached 99.7 or P425 billion of its P426.1 billion allocation. This covers expenses for salaries, allowances, and other personnel benefits, including pensions. The Administration has also released 92.5 percent—amounting to P217 billion—of the P234.4 billion set for Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE), while 72.5 percent or P151 billion of the P208.3 billion programmed for Capital Outlays has been released.
“In contrast to our previous year’s performance, we’re determined to make the bulk of our releases within the first semester of this fiscal year. This way, government agencies can take advantage of the good weather in the coming months for rolling out their projects, ahead of the opening of classes and the rainy season,” Abad said.
He added that fund releases under the 2012 General Appropriations Act (GAA) will spike further pending the release of department balances, particularly to the Department of Health (P20.3 billion), Department of Transportation and Communications (P12.2 billion), Department of Agriculture (P10.3 billion), Department of Education (P9 billion), and Department of Public Works and Highways (P7.9 billion).
“The current balance for these departments will be released once the agencies comply with the DBM’s submission requirements. These include special budget requests, as well as other documentary requirements. As much as we want to fast-track spending, we need to balance this out with agency due diligence and compliance, especially with respect to our standards for accountability and transparency,” Abad said.
Of the total 2012 program, 61 percent or P1.108 trillion of the P1.8-trillion budget has already been released by the DBM as of February 2012. Meanwhile, 73.5 percent or P803.3 billion of the P1.09 trillion programmed under the 2012 GAA has been released as of end-February.
The DBM also released 41.5 percent of the P723.6 billion for Automatic Appropriations under the 2012 budget. Of these appropriations, 100 percent or P273.3 billion set for Internal Revenue Allotments (IRA) has already been released, while 98.1 percent or P22.8 billion has been released for Retirement and Life Insurance Premiums.
Moreover, additional releases of P3.6 billion under the 2011 Continuing Appropriations were made in February this year, hiking up the total releases in this category to P5.03 billion. Of this, P2.8 billion was charged against the P11-billion pooled savings from the previous fiscal year, while P2.2 billion was charged against carry-over appropriations for the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and certain Special Purpose Funds.

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