Philippines Targets $24 Billion in External Funds for Projects

The Philippines is targeting to raise $23.7 billion externally this year to help finance the budget deficit and priority projects.

Funds from offshore commercial markets will account for $5.5 billion of the goal, while the rest will be raised from loans and grants from other sources, the finance department said in a statement on Sunday. Of the total, 34% will be for budget support, while 66% will be for project financing, it said.

President Rodrigo Duterte approved a record budget of 4.5 trillion pesos ($93.6 billion) this year to help the nation recover from its deepest economic slump since 1946. This year’s budget deficit ceiling is 1.7 trillion pesos, or 8.9% of gross domestic product.

In 2020, $17.1 billion in external financing was secured, of which $6.5 billion was from commercial markets, the department said.

“The government has consistently availed debt for budget support, recognizing that program loans and global bonds provide more flexibility,” Finance Undersecretary Mark Dennis Joven said.

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