DOF eased for incoming administration to succeed
In the interest of ensuring a smooth transition, outgoing Finance Secretary Cesar V. Purisima has instructed all Department of Finance (DOF) officials to clear all policy actions with the transition team of incoming Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez.
This included the ongoing Development Budget Coordinating Committee (DBCC) executive technical board (ETB) discussions on the deficit and other programmed amounts, with the hopes of the advance policy guidance providing stability and clarity in the remaining weeks of the transition period.
This directive was likewise extended to Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) that the DOF is tasked to develop, as well as the ongoing work on comprehensive tax reform studies, with Purisima asking all concerned officials to complete the staff work for Dominguez to review, revise, and finalize according to his policy priorities.
Specifically, as discussed by Purisima’s and Dominguez’ teams working in close coordination, Purisima instructed the DOF to let Dominguez review in advance and approve (upon the beginning of the term) the issuance of the IRRs for the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act, Tax Incentives Monitoring and Transparency Act, as well as the Microfinance NGOs Act. Purisima believed that Dominguez, who will be at the helm of implementing these laws as the next finance chief, ought to have a say on the concerned IRRs being finalized.
Purisima said, “When we in the DOF say public service is a relay race, we mean it: we don’t drop the baton when our time is up only for the next team to start over. Operationalizing professionalism means that our job until the end of June is to make life as easy as possible for the incoming team to hit the ground running on day one.”
Purisima hoped the DOF can set a gold standard in institutional professionalism in the midst of leadership changes. After their one-on-one last May 20, Purisima’s team has met with Dominguez’ transition team a number of times, with many more planned throughout June, sorted per management cluster and attached agency.
To date, the Administration, Revenue, Liability Management & Capital Markets Development, as well as the GOCC, Privatization, and Corporate Affairs Clusters have all met with Dominguez’ transition team, holding discussions on their respective operational landscapes including organizational structure, updates on key results areas, ongoing operations, key learnings, as well as opportunities and challenges.
Purisima’s team has also handed to Dominguez’ team a comprehensive manual of key information about the DOF as well as an updated fiscal and economic data book for their perusal. Purisima has likewise instructed his team to accommodate all other information or data requests, and to align all pending policy actions with incoming Secretary Dominguez’ priorities.
“We hope to give the incoming economic team all the information and resources they need to have an even more successful 6 years than we had. Their success is our success,” Purisima added.