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Bulk of P15-B ASEAN hosting budget to be spent on leaders’ hotels, cars

The bulk of the P15 billion allocated for the Philippines’ hosting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit in 2017 will be used to finance the needs of dignitaries from member states, a Cabinet official said Wednesday.

“They said this is going to be a big event, the Golden Anniversary of ASEAN. Most of it will be spent domestically – hotels, restos, local travel. Big chunk will be used for rental of cars for dignitaries,” Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno told reporters.

Diokno led the economic managers that briefed the Senate Committee Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) with the Senate Finance Committee.

Diokno earlier this month said that the P15-billion increase in the proposed budget for the Office of the President (OP) in 2017 will be to fund the Philippines’ hosting duties of the ASEAN Summit next year.

“We’re hosting the ASEAN golden anniversary, that’s P15 billion. Sa OP talaga ‘yan,” he said then.

On Wednesday, Diokno said that the budget will also be used to finance other expenses such as security, and tourism in the country.

“Some for PNP (Philippine National Police), foreign affairs, tourism. It will be accounted for,” he said, noting that the P15-billion budget was already minimized.

“We tried to trim it down,” he said. —NB, GMA News

Tags: 2017budget, asean