THE PHILIPPINES posted a of P34.482 billion in the first half of the year, well below the goal of P109.34 billion, data from the (DOF) showed.
However, the first half deficit is still double the deficit of P17.2 billion during the same period last year.
Total revenue collections hit P760.921 billion for the January to June period. This included the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) collections of P521.159 billion, and Bureau of Customs (BOC) collections of P143.425 billion. Bureau of the Treasury's income stood at P50.223 billion, while collections from other offices were at P46.114 billion.
Government spending reached P795.403 billion in the first half of 2012, 13.8% higher than the same period in 2011. Excluding interest payments, total disbursements went up by 14.4%. But this was still below the programmed spending of P885.3 billion.
In June alone, the government registered a deficit of P11.696 billion. Revenue collections in June reached P115.28 billion, 15.1% higher than the same month in 2011. Spending totaled P126.97 billion in June, up 17.8% from year ago.
Netting out interest payments in the expenditures, the national government posted a primary surplus of P115.528 billion in the first half of the year.
The government has said it was sticking to this year's growth target of 5 to 6 percent despite the economy's impressive first quarter growth with uncertainties stemming from the debt crisis in Europe and slowing U.S. and Chinese economies.
The Philippines committed to step up spending of its P1.8 trillion budget this year to help meet its growth target after last year's weak spending dampened growth.
Manila wants to keep the deficit at 2.6 percent of gross domestic product in 2012, trimming it to 2.0 percent by 2013 and keeping it at that level until 2016 when President Benigno Aquino's term ends. (ANC with Reuters)