The Department of Agriculture (DA), concurrently led by President Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr., will likely be one of the top 5 departments to receive the largest allocation under the proposed $5.268 trillion national budget. pesos next year, the Ministry of Budget and Management said.
Budget Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman said the president had already identified agriculture and education among the departments he wanted to prioritize in terms of funding.
The state is mandated under the 1987 Constitution to give education the highest budgetary priority.
“Education should always be number 1, nasa Constitution, maybe top 5 n / A [ang agriculture department]Pangandaman told reporters in a chance interview on Wednesday.
If realized, this would be an improvement for DA, which has been ranked 7th or 8th among the top 10 departments with the biggest budget allocations, at least in recent years. Under the national budget passed last year, the DA and National Irrigation Administration even had an allocation of less than 102.5 billion pesos, down 0.2% from the 102.7 billion pesos of the previous year.
Former agriculture secretary William Dar said in May this year they were preparing to come up with a bigger budget of 270 billion pesos for 2023, lamenting they had been ‘under-budgeted’ and “neglected” over the past three decades.
While Pangandaman said they did not yet have the specific budget allocation by agency, she said she was set to present the draft national budget to Cabinet on July 28. After that, the budget chief said that they aim to officially submit the draft national budget called the National Expenditure Program to Congress on August 22.
Along with agriculture and education, the budget chief said the administration was determined to keep government infrastructure spending at 5-6% of the country’s GDP.
“I presented the schedule, he wanted to make sure we stuck to the schedule and got it passed by at least December,” she said.
Although the proposed national budget ceiling for next year only increased by 4.9% year-on-year, the smallest increase in a decade, Pangandaman said they would still try to maximize and respect the budget ceiling.
As part of their considerations while preparing the budget, she said that they had already presented the top 5 agencies to the Cabinet, which had the highest utilization and which were lagging behind.