GOCC subsidies hit P5.1 billion in April
Mary Grace Padin (The Philippine Star) - June 17, 2019 - 12:00am

 MANILA, Philippines — The national government extended P5.12 billion in subsidies to government-owned and -controlled corporations (GOCCs) last April, bulk of which went to the National Irrigation Administration (NIA), the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) reported.

According to the latest cash operations report of the Treasury, subsidies to state-owned corporations rose by 32 percent last April to P5.11 billion from P3.87 billion in the same month last year.

From January to April, GOCC subsidies amounted to P14.42 billion, still 70.67 percent below the P49.16 billion recorded in the same four-month period last year.

The national government provides subsidies to state-owned firms to cover their funds for programs and projects, as well as operational expenses.

Based on BTr data, a total of 21 state firms received subsidies from the national government last April.

NIA received the largest budgetary support during the month amounting to P3.8 billion, which is 48 percent higher than the P2.56 billion it received in the same month in 2018.

NIA implements irrigation projects all over the country, and provides free irrigation to small-scale farmers.

It was followed by the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. (PCIC), which was granted P644 million in budgetary support last April. The PCIC is mandated to provide insurance protection to agricultural producers, particularly subsistence farmers, against losses arising from natural calamities, plant diseases and pest infestations.

The Philippine Rice Research Institute also received P147 million in subsidies, while the National Dairy Authority and the Philippine Heart Center accepted P106 million and P96 million, respectively.

Other GOCCs that received subsidies include the Philippine Children’s Medical Center (P67 million), Development Academy of the Philippines, (P57 million), National Kidney and Transplant Institute (P50 million), Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (P46 million), Cultural Center of the Philippines (P24 million), Lung Center of the Philippines (P17 million), Philippine Coconut Authority (P14 million), and the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (P11 million).

Eight other state-run firms were also granted with subsidies amounting to less than P10 million each.

Subsidies to GOCCs form part of the national government’s expenditures.

In 2018, government subsidies to GOCCs amounted to P136.65 billion, 4.2 percent up from the end-2017 level of P131.08 billion in 2017. This was, however, lower than the P162.55 billion subsidies programmed for the whole year.

GOCC subsidies are projected to increase to P187.08 billion this year based on the Budget of Expenditures and Sources of Financing of the Department of Budget and Management.

BUREAU OF THE TREASURY NATIONAL IRRIGATION ADMINISTRATION
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