PH Government Predicts Strong 4Q GDP Growth

Manila—(PHStocks)—The Department of Budget and Management foresees even higher GDP growth in the fourth quarter after the economy registered a 6 percent growth in the third quarter—the third highest in Asia, after China and Vietnam.

“We have now the momentum after a slow start in the first quarter at 5 percent, recovery in the second quarter at 5.8 percent, and sustained growth in the third quarter. It’s still possible to grow at 6 percent for the whole year of 2015,” said budget secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad.

Abad continued, “As in the third quarter, public spending will once again play a pivotal role in the economic expansion in the fourth quarter. Historically, 4Q has always been a strong quarter in terms of public spending as agencies rush to finish their projects. Because of the reforms introduced, like the elimination of the need for SAROs, the significant reduction of lump sums and the advance procurement of goods and services, the DBM is certain to match its yearly average of 98 percent releases. As of end September, 96 percent of agency budgets have already been released.”

It was also noted that government executives will be motivated to further improve their performance as the proposed SSL 2015—according to both Houses of Congress—is certain to pass this year. This will double their performance-based bonuses next year.

“What will further boost spending,” Abad said, “is the pressure to finish infrastructure projects from political leaders in the run up to the May 2016 elections. Performance is always an election platform and political leaders demonstrate that through the delivery of social services and public works projects.”

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