Aubrey Michaella O. Ragub IV-Galatians Philippine Expenditures Budget and Management Secretary Florencio Abad said disbursements by various departments and agencies rose 15 percent year-on-year in October as a result of government’s accelerated spending program. He said that government departments and agencies disbursed a total of P125.2 billion last October, higher than the P109 billion spent during the same period last year. “Aside from posting the third highest magnitude of monthly disbursements this year, the government’s disbursement performance in October was also closest to target, being less than five percent below it,” he said. Abad also noted that infrastructure and capital outlays posted a 23.5 percent year-on-year expansion to P14.3 billion in the 10th months this year, against year-ago’s P11.6 billion. It was also higher than last September’s P11.9 billion. “The Disbursement Acceleration Plan approved by President Benigno S. Aquino III, coupled with agencies’ continuing efforts to catch-up on regular spending, contributed significantly to the significant improvement in the government’s performance in October,” he said. Earlier, DBM reported that as of the first week of November, it has released P43.4 billion, or 60.2 percent of the P72.1-billion Disbursement Acceleration Plan. Also, it has released 88.9 percent, or P1.462 trillion of this year’s P1.645 trillion national budget as of last October. Of the total releases, P822 billion came from the General Appropriations Act and P640 billion from the automatic appropriations, continuing appropriations from the 2010 budget and the unprogramed fund. Bulk or 59.17 percent of the releases, amounting to P865.13 billion, has been given to national government agencies while 20.7 percent, or P302.57 billion, was given to local government units (LGUs). Also, 15.22 percent of the fund, or P222.44 billion, was used for interest payments and 4.91 percent, or P71.85 billion, was given to government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs). “We anticipate that the government’s Disbursement Acceleration Plan would significantly speed-up public spending during the last quarter of the year,” Abad said. Abad said releases last October were charged against the departments and agencies’ built-in appropriations amounting to P34 billion while those charged against Special Purpose Funds (SPFs) reached P12.5 billion and those of the automatic appropriations reached P4.36 billion As of end-October this year, the unreleased balance under the new GAA totals to P111.5 billion or 11.9 percent of the total program and P45.5 billion of these are for the departments and P66.1billion for SPFs.