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DBCC 50th Anniversary Legacy Book Launch


To our Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo; members of the Diplomatic Corps and Congress; our colleagues from the Cabinet; former Senator Alberto Romulo—I think he’s on his way; former Budget Minister Dr. Jaime Laya; colleagues in the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) and its Executive Technical Board; representatives from our resource institutions; development partner agencies; members of the press and the academe; a pleasant day to everyone.

Assalamu alaikum wa Raḥmatullahi wa Barakatuh. 

Before anything else, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY! Thank you for making time and for gracing the halls of the Department of Budget and Management with your esteemed presence for us to celebrate together the 54th anniversary of the DBCC.

We are blessed to have not one but two celebrations because we are also celebrating the monumental milestone of five decades of the DBCC, which we were not able to celebrate in 2020 due to the pandemic. In commemoration of the DBCC's 50 years, we are also launching this afternoon a book that documents the achievements, challenges, and reforms of the DBCC in those milestone years.

We have entitled this “50 Years in Harmony” because it is only through the harmonious collaboration of the DBCC that we have achieved economic progress and weathered global headwinds throughout the decades.

Established on May 14, 1970, the Presidential Development Budget Committee—which would later become the DBCC—was created, and I quote, “to ensure harmony and consistency as to the ends and objectives of the Annual Budget and Long-Range Development Plans.”

Over the years, the DBCC has been the frontrunner in shaping the country’s economic landscape through its review and approval of the national government’s macroeconomic targets, revenue projections, borrowing level, aggregate budget level, and expenditure priorities, recommending to the Cabinet and the President the consolidated public sector financial position and fiscal program for the nation. Indeed, the DBCC has played a crucial role in our country’s governance and development since its inception.

And I am happy to share the good news that we are reaping the fruits of our hard work. With a 5.6 percent year-on-year growth in 2023, we are on track to maintain our status as one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia.

We are also projected to be one of the top 20 fastest-growing economies in 2024 by the International Monetary Fund. With this robust economic performance, the Philippines is forecasted by S&P Global to become a one trillion-dollar economy by 2034, joining mainland China, Japan, India, South Korea, Australia, Taiwan, and Indonesia as one of the largest economies in the Asia-Pacific. And just this March, during the World Economic Forum, Google Philippines lauded the “amazing growth” of the Philippine economy under the PBBM administration. All these and more were only possible precisely because the DBCC works in harmony. 

It is, therefore, with great pride that we launch the 50th Anniversary Legacy Book of the DBCC against the backdrop of our high-performing economy. And I am truly elated and honored because this book and this afternoon’s launch have brought together the country’s brightest minds and greatest economic managers. We even have the very first Budget Minister on board, Minister Jaime Laya, and the first Minister of Budget and Management before the DBM became a department, former Senator Alberto Romulo. We also have representatives from the three branches of the government—the Executive, Legislature, and even the Judiciary, with no less than the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo—with us this afternoon, depicting how managing the economy is truly a whole-of-government affair.

It is with great pride that I also congratulate the authors of our legacy book for diligently finishing their excellent articles for this Book despite your busy schedules. Thank you for sharing your wonderful insights and expertise on the Philippine economy. Likewise, thank you to everyone who has made this book a dream come true.

I am proud to say that this is not just a pomp piece but a solid economic masterpiece with a hard-core historical review of 50 years of fiscal and monetary policies and socioeconomic planning in the Philippines penned by our economic luminaries. I am certain that this book will be a valuable resource even for future generations, learning from both the travails encountered and the triumphs won by the DBCC.

Of course, while we look back at what the DBCC has achieved in the past 50 years through the pages of this Book, we must also look forward to the next 50 years. Let this book serve as a reminder that we must always work in harmony—towards the economic transformation that we all aspire for the nation, to achieve our Agenda for Prosperity and the dream of Bagong Pilipinas.

Maraming salamat po. Happy 54th anniversary to the DBCC! Mabuhay po tayong lahat! Mabuhay po ang Bagong Pilipinas!

Wabillahi Tawfiq Wal Hidaya, Wasalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa Barakatuhu.