MANILA -- The Department of Transportation (DOTr) vows to fast-track the implementation of its infrastructure projects to cushion the impact of the delay on the passage of the 2019 national budget.
Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said they have committed to fast-track the disbursement for the projects to offset the decline in spending due to the budget impasse and the election ban on public works earlier this year.
Yung commitment ko ho diyan doon sa actual disbursement per budget namin, ang commitment ko kay Sec. Sonny at saeconomic managers, habulin namin ng mga 76 percent accomplishment catch-up plan. May catch-up plan na kami(Our commitment to our actual disbursement per budget, our commitment to Finance Sec. Dominguez and to the economic managers, we aim to accomplish 76 percent of our catch-up plan. We already have a catch-up plan)," Tugade told reporters on the sidelines of the Maritime Industry Authority's 45th-anniversary celebration on Wednesday at Port Area, Manila.
The Economic Development Cluster announced last May 24 that the government is implementing a catch-up strategy for the country to achieve its economic growth target of 6 to 7 percent this year after the Philippines' gross domestic product (GDP) declined to a four-year low of 5.6 percent during the first quarter due to the delayed passage of the 2019 national budget.
President Rodrigo Duterte signed the PHP3.757-trillion national budget only last April after the impasse in Congress.
Meanwhile, Dominguez said the spending commitment of the two main infrastructure projects -- the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and the DOTr -- with an estimated combined amount of PHP803.1 billion, is enough to cover the national government's infrastructure target.
DPWH and DOTr remain optimistic that they can deliver on their respective commitments by accelerating infrastructure disbursements and implementation of projects. To enable them to attain their targets, it would require close cooperation and support of other government agencies by expediting the approval of permits and other requirements," Dominguez said.
The Department of Budget and Management said the actual infrastructure spending for the first quarter of the year amounted to PHP207.2 billion.
The government must disburse PHP792.97 billion for infrastructure from the second to fourth quarters to reach the infrastructure-spending target of PHP1 trillion. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency