House okays DoT, DTI budgets

The House of Representatives on Monday passed the 2023 budgets of the Department of Trade and Industry and the Department of Tourism.

The DoT will get P3.573 billion while DTI will receive P22.19 billion.

Tourism and its attached agencies and corporations’ budget is 27.87 percent higher than this year’s appropriations but represents only a .068 percent share of the government’s proposed 2023 National Expenditure Program.

The tourism industry contributes P2.5 trillion to the country’s gross domestic product.

During the budget hearing, Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia-Frasco disclosed that the agency originally requested P12 billion from the Department of Budget and Management to facilitate the successful implementation of the various programs aimed at the industry’s revival.

Despite the lower budget, Frasco aired her gratitude to lawmakers “for their invaluable support as tacitly manifested in today’s plenary deliberations which echoed resounding support from the majority to the minority for an increased Tourism budget.”

Isabela Rep. Faustino “Inno” Dy, the Tourism budget’s sponsor, highlighted the potential of the industry in spurring economic activities, relaying its significant 12.8 percent contribution to the country’s GDP in 2019 or before the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country, reaching an all-time high of 8.3 million foreign arrivals.

DTI funding

Pampanga Rep. Christopher de Venecia laid down DTI’s priority programs lodged in the agency’s proposal, which include the Exports and Investments Development Program, Industry Development Program, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Program, Consumer Protection Program, as well as Consumer Education and Advocacy Program.

Through these initiatives, De Venecia bared that the DTI aims to increase the number of exports, assist more MSMEs directly or through the Go Negosyo Program, as well as expand consumer awareness and advocacy training programs while ensuring a high consumer resolution rate for consumer complaints.

He assured that the DTI aims to contribute to the country’s job generation and global competitiveness towards poverty reduction and economic growth.

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