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‘No need for Bayanihan 3’

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III discounted the need for another stimulus measure, citing the plan to use unused Bayanihan to Recover as One Act and national budget allocations.

During the virtual briefing of the inter-agency Development Budget Coordination Committee Thursday, Domingez said the budget gap for 2021 accounts for about 8.9 percent of gross domestic product.

“That assumes that whatever was not spent from the 2020 budget plus whatever was not spent in the Bayanihan 2 will be extended to next year. So that leaves us with a very, very tight fiscal situation,” he said.

Bayanihan 2 will expire in mid-December.

Dominguez said the unspent budget from this year’s national budget along with those from Bayanihan 2 will be around P213 billion.

“That would be the stimulus for next year,” he added.

Some sectors are raising the need for another stimulus package, or Bayanihan 3, after noting the need to further help sectors affected by the virus-induced pandemic.

Earlier, he said economic managers want to spend the national budget judiciously and ensure fiscal discipline to protect, among others, the country’s investment-grade rating.

He said they want to keep the budget gap at a manageable level of up to 9 percent.*PNA

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