In a press briefing, Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said disbursements on infrastructure projects and other capital outlays in April rose twice as much as the P33.5 billion recorded in the same month last year.
In a press briefing, Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said disbursements on infrastructure projects and other capital outlays in April rose twice as much as the P33.5 billion recorded in the same month last year.
Miguel De Guzman
April infrastructure spending doubles to P65.6 billion
Mary Grace Padin (The Philippine Star) - May 31, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Infrastructure spending almost doubled to P65.6 billion in April from last year, driving the jump in total government disbursements during the period, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) said yesterday.

In a press briefing, Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said disbursements on infrastructure projects and other capital outlays in April rose twice as much as the P33.5 billion recorded in the same month last year.

This brought cumulative infrastructure expenditures to P222.7 billion in the first four months, 47.5 percent higher than the P151 billion recorded in the same period in 2017.

According to Diokno, the strong growth in infrastructure spending is in line with the administration’s Build Build Build program.

The DBM said the rise in infrastructure spending was brought about by the completion of projects by the Department of Works and Highways, including the rehabilitation of roads and bridges, construction of roads leading to tourism destinations, flood control structures and drainage systems, preventive maintenance projects, and right-of-way acquisitions.

It was also driven by the capital outlay projects of state colleges and universities—such as the acquisition of equipment and construction of buildings and facilities in the University of the Philippines— and the construction of police stations and purchase of equipment by the Department of Interior and Local Government-Philippine National Police, the DBM said.

According to Diokno, the increase in infrastructure expenditures last April contributed to the 42.7-percent growth in total expenditures during the month, which settled at P261.2 billion as compared to P183.1 billion a year ago.

From January to April, government disbursements rose by 29.4 percent to P1.033 trillion from P798.4 billion the same period last year.

“We’re more than on track, in fact we’re overspending in a sense. Actually, the limit of our spending is the annual budget, but in terms of quarterly target, we are spending more than what we have programmed,” Diokno said.

He attributed the higher-than-expected growth in disbursements to the shift into the cash-budgeting system, as well as the implementation of the government’s massive infrastructure program.

According to Diokno, the DBM is committed to continue the upward momentum in government spending.

“We are keeping our foot on the gas pedal with regards to government spending. We will maintain this positive momentum for the rest of the year and virtually put an end to underspending,” the budget chief said.

DEPARTMENT OF BUDGET AND MANAGEMENT INFRASTRUCTURE SPENDING
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