STATE infrastructure spending as of end-February surged by 14.4 percent to P107.4 billion from last year’s P93.9 billion, data from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) showed.
The budget department said the pickup in infrastructure spending was attributed to payments for completed infrastructure projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways which were started late last year, as well as the mobilization costs for the current year’s projects, such as road-widening, rehabilitation and improvement and flood control.
“The construction of farm-to-market roads of the Department of Agriculture [DA] under the Bayanihan II, as well as the payables related to the provision of farm machineries and equipment [e.g., tillers, tractors, seeders, threshers, rice planters, harvesters] to qualified farmer organizations as provided in RA 11203 or the Rice Tariffication Law [RTL] also contributed to the higher infrastructure and other capital expenditures,” said DBM in its end-February National Government Disbursement Performance Report.
Overall state spending as of end-February this year rose by 18.3 percent to P610.3 billion from last year’s P516 billion last year.
For February alone, state infrastructure spending also went up to P56.1 billion this year, jumping by 23.1 percent from P45.6 billion in the same month last year.
During the month, overall state spending spiked by 37.3 percent to P335.5 billion from P244.4 billion in February 2020.
For the rest of this year, DBM said it expects the continuous implementation of infrastructure projects to be one of the major drivers of government spending growth.
Apart from this, it also sees state spending growing on the back of the release and distribution of the Social Amelioration Program for 80 percent of the low-income population affected by the reimposition of the Enhanced Community Quarantine for National Capital Region Plus, as well as the ongoing implementation of Bayanihan 2.
The government projects disbursements by the end of this year to hit P4.66 trillion. This is 7.5 percent higher than last year’s actual disbursement performance of P4.34 trillion.
Image credits: Nonie Reyes