Press Release
November 12, 2008

Focusing on job creation, infra spending and human capital investments

Senator Edgardo J. Angara today said that the 2009 budget should be attuned to the demands of the global environment in order to buck the Global Financial Crisis and prepare for the eventual global economic rebound.

"We are now in the midst of a new age and this is an entirely new world we are facing. There are new facts now that only two months ago were not with us. To date, almost 13 trillion of assets have vanished while the financial and banking system is undergoing catastrophic damage and radical change," said Angara who chairs the Senate Finance sub-committee C.

He added, "We are now going to operate under a new surrounding.. And our 2009 budget must fit into this entirely different environment. We need to adapt to this new environment to cope up and survive. And we can do this by focusing our expenditure on job generation and by preparing for the morning-after scenario through human capital investments."

In the recent budget hearings conducted by Angara, he proposed major reforms and provided directions for 2009 to various government agencies and departments.

Angara, through a joint budget hearing of infra budgets of the Departments of Public Works and Highways, Agriculture, Transportation and Communication and Tourism, initiated major reforms in public infrastructure expenditure which could expedite the implementation and improve the monitoring process involving infra projects. The Php 180 Billion allotted for infra projects translates to half a million direct jobs.

Departments of Environment and Natural Resources, and Trade and Industry budgets were also structured gearing towards job creation.

He also asked departments with R&D money (such as Department of Science and Technology, Department of Agriculture and State Universities and Colleges - SUCs) to pull their resources together and act on a targeted effort. Research and development efforts must focus on the urgent needs of Filipinos and these are: Food, Jobs, Energy and Health.

Angara also gave priority on human capital investments, by urging the Commission on Higher Education and the SUCs to focus its budget on four priorities: faculty development, facilities improvement, student scholarship and research, to improve RP's higher education competitiveness:

Angara chairs the Senate Finance sub-committee C which handles the budgets of the following government agencies: Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR); the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), and the State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) system; the Department of Science and Technology (DOST); the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI); Department of Tourism (DOT) and other executive and cultural agencies.

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