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DBM: 95 percent of 2013 nat’l budget released

The national government has released 95.3 percent allotment of the P2.006-trillion national budget of 2013 as of November last year, the Department of Budget and Management said.

In a report released on Tuesday, January 4, DBM said it has already released a total of P1.912 trillion and P1.677 trillion has been disbursed by the government agencies, it said.

DBM also reported that spending on infrastructure and capital outlay (CO) has recorded a 20.5 percent year-on-year growth in the same period, or P37.9 billion higher than 2012’s spending despite the string of natural calamities that struck the country last year.

Budget Secretary Butch Abad said the government will continue to ramp up its spending on important programs to sustain the “economic momentum” and to improve the public services.

“Even with the development challenges posed on our economy by consecutive calamities—and the toll these disasters took on government operations—our disbursements for infrastructure and other capital outlay by end-November nonetheless posted double-digit growth levels,” he said in a statement released online.

Abad stressed the government spending on important projects will continue to move faster this year as the government started its rehabilitation and reconstruction program in areas devastated by natural and man-made calamities.

“These efforts will be backed by the validity extension for remaining Calamity and Quick Response Funds, government savings, unobligated allotments and unreleased appropriations under the 2013 budget so they can still be used for post-disaster activities this year,” he added.

Among the significant releases for the month of November include funding support to the National Housing Authority’s (NHA) housing program for informal settler families, pension, terminal leave, retirement gratuity and other benefits of retiring government employees, it said.

The Quick Response Funds under the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has also been released to provide immediate assistance to areas hit by typhoon Yolanda, which hit the Visayas region on November 8. (Ron B. Lopez)