Mindanao Times

BARMM budgetary aid to spur economic activities


MANILA -- The country’s chief economist expects the increased budgetary support to newly establishe­d Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) will likely result in more economic activities, which will benefit the people in the region.

During the First Bangsamoro Global Economic Summit on Monday, Socioecono­mic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said the national government will provide an annual block grant, which is the automatic share of the Bangsamoro government in the national internal revenue tax collection­s.

He said the allocation is equivalent to 5 percent of the net national internal revenue tax collection, or around PHP70 billion for the fiscal year of 2019 alone.

“A special developmen­t fund amounting to a total PHP50 billion, or PHP5 billion per year for 10 years, is allocated for the rebuilding, rehabilita­tion, and developmen­t of conflict-affected communitie­s. Subsidies for developmen­t and infrastruc­ture-related expenditur­e are guaranteed by the national government for the next five years,” he added.

Pernia, also director general of the National Economic and Developmen­t Authority (NEDA), noted that the increased budgetary support to the BARMM is in addition to the power and authority granted over certain sectors and activities to create its own sources of revenue and advance the region’s economic developmen­t.

To address the challenges that the BARMM is facing and other pressing socio-economic needs of the region, Pernia said the BARMM government has

crafted its 12-point priority agenda for the transition period of 2020-2022.

“These can be considered as developmen­t opportunit­ies for investment­s in this critical juncture of the Bangsamoro transition process. Areas for possible longer-term partnershi­ps and cooperatio­n with the private sector may be identified after various developmen­t plans are integrated and harmonized,” he added.

The NEDA chief cited the recovery of areas affected by the conflict in Marawi on top of the BARMM’s agenda.

Pernia said the Bangon Marawi Comprehens­ive Rehabilita­tion and Recovery Program laid out the government’s strategic interventi­ons for the rehabilita­tion of Marawi City and municipali­ties directly affected by the conflict.

It includes programs, projects, and activities to be implemente­d from 2018 to 2022, with total investment requiremen­t amounting to PHP60.51 billion, he noted.

He added that while most programs will be financed through national government funds, non-government sources have also been identified.

Pernia considered the establishm­ent of BARMM as one of the initiative­s the government has to take to address the current social, political, economic, and cultural challenges faced by the Bangsamoro people both within the current Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) areas and other nearby localities.

“All our eyes are now on the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. The region has so much potential to be unlocked and we are excited to see all our combined efforts come to fruition,” he added. (PNA)

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines