PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte signed into law Thursday, December 30, the General Appropriations Act (GAA) of 2022 in a ceremony held at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan Palace.
The 2022 GAA, amounting to P5.024 trillion, is higher by 11.5 percent than this year’s P4.506-trillion budget.
It also includes funds for coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic response and recovery operations for areas hit by Typhoon Odette (Rai), the strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines this year.
The Department of Budget and Management announced earlier that P6 billion out of the P10 billion pledged by Duterte for recovery of typhoon-torn areas in Visayas and Mindanao would be sourced from the 2022 national budget.
Duterte, in his speech during the ceremony, thanked Congress for ensuring the “timely ratification” of next year’s national budget.
He said the passage of the 2022 GAA 2022 “reflects the healthy collaboration among all branches of government, which is crucial in the attainment of our national development goals especially during these trying times.”
He added that the 2022 national budget “reaffirms the government’s strong commitment to provide a more comfortable and productive life for each Filipino.”
“This will also cement the administration’s legacy of real change for future generations guided by the three main pillars of building resilience amidst the pandemic, sustaining the momentum towards recovery, and continuing the legacy of infrastructure development,” said Duterte.
Among the agencies with the highest budget allocation are the Department of Education, Department of Public Works and Highways, Department of the Interior and Local Government, Department of Health, Department of National Defense, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department of Transportation, Department of Agriculture, The Judiciary, and Department of Labor and Employment.
Aside from signing the 2022 GAA, Duterte also extended the availability of this year’s national budget to December 31, 2022.
This will allow government agencies to fully utilize the unused budget for 2021 for the implementation of priority programs and projects, said Malacañang. (LMY)