/ 17 September 2022

SENATOR Pia Cayetano stressed the need for adequate funding for the education and health sectors that are within the targets provided by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

During the budget briefing, Cayetano noted the absence of a clear indication that the country needs to improve the delivery of education and health.

Cayetano said the target provided for education is between 4 and 6 percent of the gross domestic product. However, the budget for the Department of Education is only 2.9 percent of GDP.

“Since we have a lot of catching up to do, I don’t think it’s enough that we are near 4 percent… I think we should be on the upper end. Let’s be clear about that,” Cayetano said.

Budget Secretary Amenah Pangandaman highlighted some allocations under the proposed P5.268 trillion 2023 national budget.

Pangandaman said the proposed expenditure program is 4.9 percent higher than this year’s budget and is equivalent to 22.2 percent of the Gross Domestic Product.

By expense item, personnel services expenditure has the largest share at 31 percent or P1.631 trillion; capital outlays at 18.6 percent or P980.3 billion; and allocations to local government units at 18.3 percent or P962.2 billion.

She also mentioned the allocation for maintenance and other operating expenses at 16.6 percent or P873.2 billion; support to government-owned and controlled corporations at 3.7 percent or P195.8 billion; debt burden at 11.6 percent or P611 billion; and tax expenditure fund, 0.3 percent or P14.5 billion.