MANILA, Dec. 7 (Xinhua) -- The Philippine government's spending on infrastructure and other outlays for October amounts to 51.5 billion pesos (1.02 billion U.S. dollars), increasing 17.8 percent year-on-year, a government statement said.
The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) said on Wednesday the October figure is 17.8 percent higher than the 43.7 billion pesos (861.6 million U.S. dollars) recorded in October 2016.
"The boost in infrastructure spending was primarily due to the public work projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) such as road construction and flood control rehabilitation or improvements," the DBM said in a report.
It said the acquisition of transport and other equipment of the Department of Interior and Local Government -- Philippine National Police (DILG-PNP) under its capability enhancement program, as well as the payment for various communication, navigational and air traffic management system projects also contributed to the higher infrastructure and other capital spending.
Altogether, the DBM said national government disbursements posted a 28.2 percent increase in October, the highest growth recorded so far in the year, as spending reached 226.9 billion pesos (4.5 billion U.S. dollars).
From January to October this year, the government spent 442.7 billion pesos (8.7 billion U.S. dollars) on infrastructure and capital outlays, which expanded by 11.8 percent compared to the 395.8 billion pesos (7.8 billion U.S. dollars) recorded in the same period for 2016.
"The significant growth in government disbursements for the month of October is encouraging news in view of our expansionary fiscal policy," said Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno.
He said the DBM, in coordination with the implementing agencies, will continue to monitor and improve spending performance.
"We expect government disbursements to ramp up further in the last two months of the year, especially with the one-year validity of the 2017 appropriations," he said. The government is committed to its full-year disbursement target of 2.909 trillion pesos (57.35 billion U.S. dollars), he added.