Breakfast with Ben
Good morning everyone and Happy New Year! And welcome to our first press conference for 2018. Today, we have three topics to talk about:
(1) First is the 2018 National Budget allocations for mitigating measures meant to offset price increases resulting from the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (or Train);
(2) Second, the FY 2018 General Appropriations Act provisions which were vetoed by the President; (3) And third, the 2019 Budget Preparations.
1. Mitigating Measures in the 2018 National Budget to offset short-term price effects of Train
We have embarked on the largest tax cut in Personal Income taxation in the nation’s history. Ninety-nine (99) percent of personal income tax filers will be benefited with a substantial tax cut while the top tax filers with a taxable annual income of P8 million or higher will bear a heavier burden at 35 percent. The huge revenue loss from the PIT cut (ESTIMATED AT P146.6 billion in 2018 and P894.2 BILLION FROM 2018 TO 2022) will be offset by broader VAT and new indirect taxes.
Aware of the short-term and transitory effects of Train on consumer prices, we incorporated a number of mitigating measures in the 2018 National Budget.
First, we have set aside P24.5 billion for the unconditional cash grants of P200 per month to the poorest fifty percent (50%) of households — approximately 10 million households — to be identified by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). For 2019 and 2020, the monthly cash grant will be increased from P200 to P300. In 2018, we have provided for P24 billion + 7% administrative cost for a total of P25.7 billion. In 2019 and 2020, we will provide for P38.5 billion in the national budget.
We have also allocated about P2.3 billion for the loan facility to be extended to PUV drivers to replace old public utility jeepneys with safer, more comfortable, and more economic PUVs.
Lastly, P2.0 billion is earmarked for the implementation of the National ID System, which will ensure that public resources are delivered to their intended beneficiaries. 2. FY 2018 GAA Provisions Vetoed by the President
Our next topic: President Duterte vetoed a number of provisions in the FY 2018 General Appropriations Act. In total, four provisions were directly vetoed, 28 were placed under conditional implementation, and 4 were met with general observations, out of the 176 provisions and new revisions introduced by Congress. 3. 2019 Budget Call
Finally, for our third topic. I would like announce to the entire bureaucracy and the general public that the preparation of the 2019 budget has begun. Last week, January 3, 2018, the Department of Budget and Management has issued the Budget Call for 2019. This means that all government agencies will now get ready to formulate and submit their budget proposals for 2019, based on the macroeconomic assumptions adopted by DBCC last December and parameters prepared by the DBM.
Agencies are expected to submit their Agency Budget Proposals to the DBM by mid-April 2018, while the 2019 President’s Budget will be submitted to Congress on July 23, 2018, the day of the State of the Nation Address. OPENING STATEMENT Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno JANUARY 10, 2018