GOCC subsidies decline in Oct.

SUBSIDIES provided to government-owned and -controlled corporations (GOCCs) declined sharply in October, the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) reported.

The BTr said budgetary support to GOCCs fell 76.98% to P9.189 billion during the month.

The government provides subsidies to GOCCs to help cover operational expenses.

The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) was the top recipient of subsidies in October, taking in P4.105 billion or 44.7% of the total.

This was followed by the National Food Authority, which got P2.01 billion and the National Housing Authority (NHA), which received P1.15 billion during the month.

Other top recipients in October include the Light Rail Transit Authority (P766 million), the Philippine Children’s Medical Center (P179 million),  the Philippine Heart Center (P178 million), and the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (P116 million).

GOCCs that were given at least P50 million during the month were the Philippine Coconut Authority (P92 million), Philippine National Railways (P81 million), the National Dairy Authority (P80 million), the Lung Center of the Philippines (P70 million), and the Philippine Rice Research Institute (P66 million).

Receiving no subsidies were the National Electrification Administration, the Bases Conversion and Development Authority, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp., the Philippine Fisheries Development Authority, the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), the Philippine Postal Corp., the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp., the Small Business Corp., the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority, the Social Housing Finance Corp., and the Sugar Regulatory Administration.

In the 10 months to October, subsidies amounted to P146.316 billion, down 9.8%.

PhilHealth took in P50.614 or 34.6% of total subsidies in the 10-month period. This was followed by the NIA at P35.918 billion and the NHA at P17.777 billion.

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort said that lower subsidies in October were due to the improved financial performance of GOCCs with the reopening of the economy.

“No more large lockdowns since 2022 also improved the financial performance of some GOCCs. Lockdowns have proven to be costly for the government in terms of the various financial assistance (given to the public) and other COVID programs,” he said in a Viber message.

He also cited fiscal reform measures that “increased revenue collection and more disciplined spending that helped narrow the budget deficit in recent months.” — Luisa Maria Jacinta C. Jocson


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