The Department of Budget and Management has released P11.8 billion to the National Irrigation Administration for the expansion of irrigation across the country, as well as the P500-million quick response fund.
“This latest release, which is part of NIA’s (National Irrigation Administration’s) budget this year, will go towards irrigation network services and locally-funded projects. The remaining portion of NIA’s P32.7 billion budget for 2016 will follow once the agency submits the necessary documentary requirements,” Secretary Abad said.
Irrigation Network Services—part of NIA’s mandate—consists of the extension and expansion of existing irrigation systems, repair, operation, and maintenance of pumping systems, repair of groundwater systems, irrigation management support services, rehabilitation of irrigation works damaged by Typhoon Yolanda, and climate change adaptation works.
Meanwhile, under their budget, P500 million was appropriation to NIA’s quick response fund (QRF). This release will cover the requirements of NIA towards addressing the impacts of El Niño.
Abad added that proposed measures to address the impacts of El Niño may be funded by the regular budgets of agencies as long as these measures fall under programs, activities and projects inherent to the agency’s mandate.
“We know that many communities are severely affected by the El Niño phenomenon. Since we are only in the first quarter of the year, we cannot identify yet the budgetary savings to be used for interventions for El Niño. We have advised NIA, as well as concerned agencies, to maximize their appropriations and to charge their funding requirements for said interventions to existing programs, activities and projects under their budget. Agencies may also use the QRF to serve as stand-by fund to normalize the condition of peoples and communities in areas under state of calamity,” he said.
If the regular budget and QRF are insufficient to fund El Niño-related interventions, agencies may request for the release of additional funds to be charged against the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund (NDRRMF).
—From the Department of Budget and Management