House receives proposed P2.0Tr national budgetBy Karen Boncocan
MANILA, Philippines – The House of Representatives has received President Benigno Aquino III’s proposed P2.006 trillion national budget for 2013 from Budget and Management Secretary Florencio Abad.
The amount is higher by 10.5 percent or P190 billion from this year’s budget and represents the 16.8 percent projected gross domestic product.
Based on a higher growth assumption of 6.0 to 7.0 percent, the President said that the proposed Empowerment Budget was “consistent with the country’s macroeconomic and fiscal aspiration for the next fiscal year and in the medium-term.”
Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. said that lawmakers would be given time to go through the proposed budget through “intensive hearings” within the next two months.
Belmonte said that they wanted to start Aquino’s third year in presidency with a duly approved budget at hand.
Cavite Representative Joseph Emilio Abaya who chairs the committee on appropriations said that the budget calendar has been approved and that they were eyeing to have the budget passed by December 30.
Abad said that in crafting the proposed budget, they kept in mind the need to “encourage more robust and inclusive fiscal growth in the coming year… [and] intensify civic society and grassroots involvement in budget preparations.”
Lawmakers are expected to use the entire August to go over the proposed budget in the committee level.
The budget is expected to undergo plenary deliberation and approval at the House by September after which it will be sent to the Senate by October.