A third set of budget stimulus measures dedicated to funding reconstruction from recent natural calamities appears off the table for the Duterte administration.
Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua said, “The priority is to fully spend the 2020 budget and Bayanihan II.”
Chua’s position was the clearest sign yet that economic managers are sticking to their hallmark of controlling spending as the economy grappled to bounce back from the health crisis, a task now more complicated with the damage left by five typhoons in the past two months.
At the same time however, government is cool to new stimulus while spending is slow. As it is, agencies have been sluggish in spending even the limited amount allocated them, foremost of which was the 140 billion pesos in additional spending under the Bayanihan to Recover As One Act or Bayanihan II.
As of November 14, only 85 billion pesos of that amount had been released.