Government ramps up GOCC subsidies in October

Louise Maureen Simeon - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The government continued to increase budgetary support to state-run firms, jacking it up by almost eight-fold to nearly P40 billion in October, largely allocated to the health sector, according to the Bureau of the Treasury.

Data from the Treasury showed subsidies to government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs) in October skyrocketed by 668 percent to P39.98 billion from just P5.21 billion in the same period last year.

During the month, budgetary support for major non-financial government corporations reached P18.14 billion, soaring by close to 400 percent, while subsidies for other government corporations also jumped to P21.84 billion from a measly P1.38 billion a year ago.

The government grants subsidies to GOCCs as a way to cover operational expenses that are not supported by their own revenues.

For October, nearly half or 48 percent of the total subsidies went to the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. at P19.16 billion.

Same period last year, PhilHealth did not get any subsidy from the government.

The National Irrigation Administration secured the second highest subsidy at P6.95 billion while the National Housing Authority came in third with P4.72 billion.

Other top recipients during the month include the National Power Corp. with P4.03 billion, National Food Authority with P1.97 billion, and the Philippine Fisheries Development Authority with P888 million.

During the month, GOCCs that did not get any subsidy include the National Home Mortgage Finance Corp., National Electrification Administration, Bases Conversion and Development Authority, and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines.

Also included are the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority, Duty Free Philippines Corp., National Tobacco Administration, Philippine Crop Insurance Corp., Social Housing Finance Corp., and the Sugar Regulatory Administration.

For the 10-month period, subsidies inched up two percent to P154.24 billion from P151.08 billion a year ago.

For January to October budgetary support for major non-financial government corporations reached P65.75 billion, up 16.61 percent, while subsidies for other government corporations declined six percent to P88.17 billion.

In October, government expenditures went up by 22 percent to P387.9 billion while revenues only improved by 14 percent to P288.9 billion.

The budget deficit during the month widened to P99.1 billion.

Subsidies for GOCCs dipped almost 20 percent to P185 billion last year after the government slowly removed budgetary support for state-run firms as the economy reopens from the pandemic.



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