The work so far
Other cabinet members perform too
The Duterte Administration has ticked off a number of items in its to-do list halfway through from when it first got down to do business. These are among the many that has transpired thus far.
The Department of Budget and Management allocated P816.2 billion of the 2019 budget to the government’s infrastructure program, ‘Build, Build,
Build,’ an amount equivalent to 4.2 percent of the country’s local output or the gross domestic product (GDP).
As a result of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law, the Department of Finance (DoF) reported that some P111.7 billion in personal income tax have been collected as of end-May this year.
The DoF also said TRAIN revenues amounted to P68.4 billion or 8.1 percent higher than the full-year target of P63.3 billion. The TRAIN law is the first package of the Duterte administration’s Comprehensive Tax Reform Program.
In terms of strengthening foreign relations, the administration took steps to strengthen bilateral ties with Israel, Jordan, Indonesia, Singapore, Papua New Guinea, China, Japan and Thailand, among others.
The key agency for the BBB, the Department of Transportation (DoTr), has made significant strides in numerous aviation, maritime, road transport and railway projects under the infrastructure buildup program. It has, for instance, broken ground for the Metro Manila Subway Project and the LRT Cavite Extension, among many other projects. It has also signed the contract for the design and construction of Area A of the Unified Grand Central Station which marks the intersection for the LRT-1, MRT-3, MRT-7 and the subway.
Meanwhile, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) achieved new levels of efficiency in helping micro, small and medium enterprises. It has released loans amounting to P3.10 billion to 83,088 MSME beneficiaries under its microfinancing program in just over two years since the program was established in 2017 with a budget of P1 billion.
The agency is also confident it will hit its target of P1 trillion worth of investment pledges this year. Investment pledges rose 27.4 percent to P304.4 billion in the January-to-June period in 2019.
To allow the Department of Energy (DoE) to better fulfill its mandate of ensuring energy efficiency and sustainability, President Duterte in April also signed Republic Act No. 11285, or the Act Institutionalizing Energy Efficiency and Conservation, Enhancing the Efficient Use of Energy and Granting Incentives to Energy Efficiency and Conservation Projects.
On May, the DoE broke ground for First Gen Corp.’s liquefied natural gas receiving terminal designed to help ensure energy security.
President Durterte also signed Republic Act No 11223, or the Universal Health Care act this year that enrolls Filipinos into the national health insurance program.
At the same time, the Department of Education saw a rise in the number of schoolchildren this year. From 27.018 million kindergarten to Grade 12 students in 2018, the DepEd saw 27.216 children enter school grounds in 2019. Additionally, it projects 735,000 students to enroll in its Alternative Learning System for out-of-school youths and adults.
The Department of Science and Technology thus far has developed two microsatellites, Diwata 1 and 2, which will be used for earth observation for application in disaster and risk management, agriculture, forest monitoring, resource assessment and maritime.
As widely heard, the Department of Tourism also undertook the rehabilitation of Boracay Island. In line with initiatives, tourist arrivals in the country reached 3.489 million in the first five months this year, up 9.76 percent from last year’s 3.178 million.
AN artist’s perspective of Metro Manila Subway terminal.
N =; Secretary Alfonso Cusi.