The Department of Trade and Industry expressed confidence that exports of goods and services will reach $110 billion in 2023, making up for unmet pre-pandemic targets.
The agency said during the Congressional hearing on the agency’s 2023 budget that it was working hard to sustain exports’ growth.
Government data showed merchandise exports dropped to $6.2 billion in July, on slower demand for electronics products.
Total merchandise exports in the first seven months rose 5.4 percent to $44.7 billion from a year ago despite the decline in July.
These figures exclude services exports, which cover international tourism receipts, information technology, business process outsourcing revenues, transportation and logistics, financial services and others.
The DTI is drafting a new set of export targets under the multi-sectoral Philippine Export Development Plan 2023-2028.
It underscored the need to fund a number of programs under the 2023 budget as the lead agency in the implementation of the Innovative Startup Act and the Philippine Creative Industries Act.
Programs for micro, small and medium enterprises were slashed by P1.2 billion, while funds for Go Negosyo Centers suffered cuts of 12.78 percent, despite clear policy pronouncements from the President to support these industries.
Other programs that were given lower funding were the One Town, One Product program with 5-percent decrease, while the Shared Services Facilities would have zero capital outlay for 2023. The Livelihood Seeding Program-Negosyo, Serbisyo sa Barangay was also defunded.
Budget for DTI’s attached agencies and/corporations declined by 22 percent to P1.71 billion from P2.19 billion.
Under the 2023 National Expenditures Program, the DBM approved a P22.196-billion budget for the DTI, including automatic appropriation. This represents a 10-percent decrease from the approved budget of P24.59 billion in 2022.