More seniors to be helped by gov't, finance chief says


Posted at Sep 12 2016 07:09 PM

MANILA - More senior citizens are receiving financial assistance under the proposed national budget of P3.35 trillion for 2017, Finance Secretary Sonny Dominguez claimed.

The 20 percent discount on purchases and transactions provided for Filipinos 60 years old and above would remain intact, Dominguez said.

In next year's proposed budget, the allocation for indigent senior citizens doubled to P17.94 billion from P8.71 billion this year due to subsidies and expanded coverage.

The proposed budget would cover indigent seniors 60 years old and above compared to the previous coverage of 77 and above. The proposed hike will increase the number of beneficiaries to 2.8 million from the current 1.4 million.

"For the vulnerable sectors of society who would be affected by the lifting of some of the VAT exemptions, we would design a subsidy system similar to the CCT [conditional cash transfer program], which is more transparent and targeted," Dominguez said.

Government will also retain benefits for seniors under its proposed comprehensive tax reform plan, he added.