Sat. Sep 18th, 2021

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) on Monday submitted to Congress the proposed P5.024-trillion national budget for 2022.

(Photo Courtesy: PNA)

Speaker Lord Allan Velasco, Majority Leader Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, and other leaders of the House of Representatives received the National Expenditure Program (NEP), the last budget proposal under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, from DBM Undersecretaries Rolando Toledo, Kim Robert De Leon, and Janet Abuel.

Velasco said the submission of the budget proposal officially signals the start of the budget season in Congress or the legislative process of evaluation, debate, and amendment, which he hopes could lead to the “timely and decisive passage” of the 2022 General Appropriations Act.

“Today, we gladly received from President Rodrigo Roa Duterte—through the Department of Budget and Management—the National Expenditure Program that would assist the legislature in the review and deliberation of the proposed national budget for fiscal year 2022,” Velasco said.

Velasco said the House is all set to carry its constitutional duty of carefully scrutinizing the P5.024-trillion national budget, which includes an allocation of at least P240.75 billion for the country’s Covid-19 response.

“As the coronavirus pandemic drags on and with no end in sight, it is incumbent upon Congress to swiftly pass a national budget that will not only serve as an instrument for development, but also as a powerful tool to decisively defeat Covid-19 and rebuild people’s lives and livelihoods,” he said.

The budget proposal is guided by a strategy supported by three main pillars, namely: Building Resilience amidst the Pandemic; Sustaining the Momentum towards Recovery; and Continuing the Legacy of Infrastructure Development.

The proposed budget for next year is 11.5-percent higher than this year’s budget of P4.506 trillion.

The top 10 departments with the biggest allocations are the Department of Education with P773.6 billion budget; Department of Public Works and Highways, P686.1 billion; Department of the Interior and Local Government, P250.4 billion; Department of Health, P242 billion; Department of National Defense, P222 billion; Department of Social Welfare and Development, P191.4 billion; Department of Transportation, P151.3 billion; Department of Agriculture, P103.5 billion; The Judiciary, P45 billion; and Department of Labor and Employment, P44.9 billion.

About 38.3 percent or P1.922 trillion of the budget will go to social services; 29.3 percent or P1.474 trillion to economic services; 17.2 percent or P862.7 billion to general public services; 10.8 percent or P541.3 billion to debt burden (including net lending); and 4.5 percent or P224.4 billion to defense.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the 2022 NEP was carefully crafted to provide the necessary funding requirements to support the country’s resilience against the Covid-19 pandemic, to sustain the trajectory of economic growth, and to continue the legacy of infrastructure development.

 We expect that the Department of Budget and Management has submitted this morning the P5.024-trillion proposed 2022 National Expenditure Program to Congress. This is the highest budget submitted by the Executive Branch to Congress,” Roque said in Filipino in a press briefing in SM City San Mateo.

Under the 2022 NEP, P45.4 billion was proposed for the purchase Covid-19 booster shots of 93.798 million fully vaccinated Filipinos.

The NEP will allocate P983 million for the establishment of the Virology Science and Technology Institute of the Philippines.

A total of P140 million will be allocated for the biosurveillance and immune-biosurveillance of Covid-19 variants under the Philippine Genomic Information and Resource Hub. 

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