Diokno says Marcos to unveil economic ‘gameplan’ in first SONA

Art Fuentes, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 06 2022 05:53 PM | Updated as of Jul 06 2022 10:41 PM

MANILA - President Ferdinand Marcos Jr will unveil his economic “gameplan” when he holds his first State of the Nation Address later this month, Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said on Wednesday. 

Diokno said the gameplan, which he called the Medium Term Fiscal Consolidation Framework, will lay out Marcos’ vision to grow the economy, reduce poverty and usher the country into upper middle income status during his term. 

He also said the government would have enough funds as tax collections rise with economic growth. 

“I think we still have a lot of fiscal space because we are confident that our revenues will pick up,” said Diokno, who earlier downplayed calls from his predecessor to implement new taxes to cover debt payments

He said the economy is expected to grow 6.5 to 7.5 percent this year, and 6.5 to 8 percent from 2023 to 2028. 

With this, the administration targets to reduce the national government deficit-to-GDP ratio by 2023 to 3 percent from 9 percent currently.

The national debt-to-GDP level will also be reduced, he said.

“It will be down to 60 percent by 2025,” said Diokno, noting that the current debt-to-GDP level swelled to 63 percent due to pandemic-related spending. 

The Finance chief said they aim to lower the country's poverty incidence to 9 percent before the end of Marcos' term in 2028.

He said the country is also aiming to achieve upper middle income status by the end of Marcos’ terms. 

“So that means we are shooting for a $4,046 [around P222,530 at $1 = P55] per capita income for Filipinos.” 
 
The government will also spend 5 to 6 percent of GDP on infrastructure annually from 2023 to 2028, Diokno said.

He said he could not disclose more details of Marcos’ economic gameplan as the President himself will reveal this during his SONA, which is set on July 25.

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