By Business World, July 20 2018


Image Credit to AFP

USE of official development assistance (ODA) loans improved in 2017 while total aid portfolio actually declined, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said in a statement on Thursday.

The government has disbursed about $1.4 billion in ODA loans last year, up 11.5% from $1.25 billion in 2016.

Disbursement rate, or the disbursement as a percentage of the target was at 67.21% from 61.12%.

“This means implementing agencies are improving their technical capacities and making headway in resolving key issues that cause delays in the execution of programs and projects,” Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia was quoted in the statement as saying.

The Philippines’ total ODA portfolio reached $14.72 billion in 2017, consisting of 352 grants worth $2.42 billion and 70 loan packages amounting to $12.3 billion.

That was less than 2016’s $15.60-billion ODA.

NEDA also said that ODA availment rate — disbursements as a percentage of scheduled disbursement — rose to 71.5% from 67% in 2016.

“The infrastructure sector continued to receive the largest share of the total ODA at $6.62 billion, accounting for 45% of the total amount, followed by social reform and community development at 26.11%,” NEDA said.

“… Japan remained the top provider of ODA to the Philippines in 2017,” the socioeconomic planner added, noting that “[i]ts loans and grants for 2017 stood at $5.33 billion, accounting for 36.18% of the country’s total ODA portfolio.”

Japan was followed by the World Bank with $3.07 billion, making up 20.88% of the Philippines’ ODA portfolio, and the Asian Development Bank with $2.97 billion, taking 20.16% of the pie.

Of the total 407 ODA-funded projects, 271 projects or about two-thirds were “on schedule”, while 79 — about a fifth of the total — were completed.

Fifty-two others, or 13%, were “behind schedule” and five were “closed with incomplete outputs.”