Govt spending to ensure growth targets met – DOF

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The Department of Finance (DOF) assured the public that the government will continue its spending program to make sure the year’s economic growth targets are achieved.

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“We’re sticking to our annual [GDP growth target], which is 6.5 percent to 7.5 percent. We’re hoping that we have a stronger second half. That will depend on a lot of things . . .” Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima said on the sidelines of the 110th anniversary celebration of the Bureau of Internal Revenue.

“On the part of government, we will continue to accelerate budget disbursements to make sure we get projects on the ground as quickly as we can,” he said.

The government’s actual disbursements reached P201.1 billion in June, 44 percent or P61.6 billion over comparable figures last year.
For the first half of the year, expenditures amounted to P987.7 billion, 11 percent or P97 billion higher than the year-earlier level.

Purisima added that the government’s spending commitment is also reflected in the P2.6 trillion proposed national budget for 2015. Of this, more than P570 billion is allotted to infrastructure spending, which is anticipated to contribute 4 percent of the country’s GDP next year.

“Obviously, [the]government only plays a part in this whole growth equation. The private sector is a big component. We will do our best to be within the range that we are forecasting,” he said.

“We’re definitely going to work hard to make sure we catch up. Revenue is there. We have the resources,” he said.

Total revenue in June amounted to P138.6 billion, with tax representing 88.6 percent of the total, growing by 6 percent year-on-year due to the stronger performance of tax collecting agencies.

As of end-June, year-to-date collections stood at P933.7 billion, up 11 percent over the comparable period last year.

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