By Genalyn Kabiling
The Duterte administration is committed to provide the public “easy” access to budget information as it welcomed reports that the country ranked first in Asia for budget transparency.
Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said the country’s latest ranking underscored the government’s resolve in upholding transparency and accountability in government.
“With the signing of Executive Order No. 2 or the Freedom of Information, we guarantee that the public will continue to have easy access to substantial budget information,” he said during a press conference in Baguio City.
In the Open Budget Survey 2017, the Philippines scored a transparency or open budget index (OBI) of 67 out of 100, compared with the 64 obtained in 2015.
The country also earned a score of 41 for public participation in the budget process and 65 for budget oversight by the legislature and the Commission on Audit.
“This makes the Philippines number one in Asia for budget transparency. We rank 19th worldwide,” Roque said.
He described the open budget index as an independent and comparative measure of budget transparency where 109 equally weighted key indicators are used including pre-budget statement, executive’s budget proposal, enacted budget, citizens budget, in-year reports, mid-year review, year-end report, and audit report.