The Department of Finance (DOF) in partnership with the University of the Philippines School of Economics (DOF-UPSE) will offer a public finance postgraduate scholarship program to “produce high quality graduates, and provide DOF the next generation of public finance managers” starting January this year, according to Finance Undersecretary and Chief Economist Gil Beltran.
Beltran reported during a recent DOF Executive Committee (Execom) meeting that the eligible DOF employees will undertake Master in Economics or Master in Development Economics studies for four semesters of full time-study-leave with pay.
According to the report presented by Beltran, the pre-screening and endorsement of candidates will proceed on February and April 2018; and screening and selection, admission and processing on May to June 2018. The timeline for the first semester will start on August to December 2018; second semester on January to May 2019; third semester on August to December 2019, and last semester on January to May 2020.
Furthermore, refresher courses, assessment, research seminars, comprehensive examinations, and field reviews are to be conducted spread over the academic year until completion.
“The next batch will cover bureaus and attached agencies to undertake graduate programs within UP system such as NCPAG (University of the Philippines National College of Public Administration and Governance),” Beltran added.
This DOF-UPSE Scholarship is a new program under the Philippine Tax Academy (PTA).
As of mid-January, the DOF has already received eleven (11) applications for the scholarship program.
The PTA through DOF will soon tie up with University of Makati (UMak) as the main campus of the academy. Beltran previously said that the DOF is also planning to open regional campuses of the PTA in the Visayas and Mindanao with the main site in Region 10 following a request by the Bureau of Local Government (BLGF) for the renovation of its Northern Mindanao regional office in Cagayan de Oro City to a PTA center.
Beltran also said the BLGF will also soon start offering PTA training courses to local treasurer assigned in the Bicol region.
PTA, he said, “is intended to develop a corps of tax and fiscal experts who will formulate and implement the fiscal programs of government to ensure attainment of the country’s fiscal objective.”
Under Republic Act 10143 signed almost seven years ago, the PTA “shall develop and implement a curriculum that includes those pertaining to: (a) the technical aspects of tax collection, administration and compliance; and (b) the career orientation and development for civil servants.”
RA 10143 states that the PTA “shall serve as a learning institution for tax collectors and administrators of the government and selected applicants from the private sector.”
Other Asian countries such as Japan, China, India, Australia, Singapore and Malaysia have their respective tax academies that also train tax and customs authorities, as well as private individuals in taxation and finance assessment and management.
Meanwhile, the Knowledge Co-Creation Program (KCCP) of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is now offering Master’s and Doctorate degree scholarships in seven universities in Japan.
The qualified applicants are entitled to free tuition once admitted in proposed universities such as the National Graduate Institute for Policy (GRIPS), Waseda University, Sophia University, International University of Japan, Kyoto University, Hitotsubashi University, and University of Tsukaba, Finance Undersecretary Gil Beltran said during a DOF Executive Committee (Execom) meeting.
Beltran said other benefits will also be provided such as expenses for custom-made program, and other support programs during the study in Japan; round-trip airfare; books, and interior researches; allowances for living expenses; outfit allowance, and moving allowance.
Qualified applicants must either be a “young or middle government official, or personnel from private institutions who are expected to engage in policy formulation; prospective academicians; preferably less than 40 years old, and those who are over 40 years old are subject for discussion; Bachelor’s or Master’s (if to pursue Doctorate) degree holder; has competent English language skills both in written and oral communication to complete the Master’s and Doctorate degree courses such as TOEFL Paper-based test (PBT) of 550 or higher; TOEFL iBT of 79 or higher; or IELTS (Academic Modules) of 6.0 or higher,” Beltran added.