Philippines: Gov’t readies funds for 3 new departments

  • The government is ready to provide funds for the establishment and operation of three new departments being pushed by President Duterte, according to the Department of Finance (DOF).
  • During his 4th State of the Nation Address (SONA) on 22 Jul 19, Duterte called on lawmakers to speed up the passage of bills creating the Department of Disaster Resilience and the Department of Water Resources and Water Regulatory Commission.
  • He also called for the establishment of a Department of Overseas Filipinos to ensure the protection and welfare of Filipinos working abroad.
  • Budget Secretary Janet Abuel committed to provide funding support to the government’s priority programs, as enumerated by Duterte during his SONA, taking into consideration the government’s limited resources.
  • Meanwhile, Dominguez said the DOF would speed up the digitization of the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Bureau of Customs (BOC) and the Social Security System (SSS), in line with the directives of the President.
  • He said the DOF is also putting in place measures to make the Philippine Tax Academy fully operational to further professionalize employees of the BIR and BOC, plus the Bureau of Local Government Finance.
  • The finance chief also expressed hope that Duterte’s call for the passage of the remaining packages of the Comprehensive Tax Reform Program (CTRP) would encourage lawmakers to approve these reforms within 2019.

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