Dividends remitted by government-owned and -controlled corporations (GOCCs) as of mid-May this year have already reached P38.9 billion, which is only 3 percent shy of the P40.17 billion in actual collections for the entire 2018, according to the Department of Finance (DOF).
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said that, given this robust trend in the first five months of the year alone, the 2019 dividend collections will easily surpass the previous year’s figures, setting the stage for a new unprecedented amount of dividend contributions from GOCCs.
The P40.17 billion collected in 2018 was the highest amount ever collected so far for an entire year since the law requiring state firms to hand over 50 percent of their annual net earnings to the national government was enacted in 1994.
In her report to Dominguez during a recent DOF Executive Committee (Execom) meeting, Finance Undersecretary Antonette Tionko said the dividend collections of P38.9 billion from January to May 16 this year was 45 percent higher than the 2018 collections of P26.8 billion for the same period.
A total of 46 GOCCs remitted dividends as of May 16 this year.
Tionko, who heads the DOF’s Corporate Affairs Group (CAG), said the highest dividend contributor as of May 16 this year was the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (PAGCOR) with P16.17 billion; followed by the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corp. (PDIC), with P4.58 billion; and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), P4 billion.
The rest of the Top 1o dividend contributors for the Jan. 1-May 16 2019 period were the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) with PP3.51 billion; Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA), P3.42 billion; National Power Corporation (Napocor), P842 million; Clark Development Corp. (CDC), P815 million; Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO), P744 million; PNOC Exploration Corp. (PNOC-EC), P699 million; and Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), P650 million, according to data from the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr).
Last year, the Land Bank of the Philippines (LandBank) was allowed to waive its dividend contributions of P7.82 billion to boost its capital requirements, thus bringing the actual amount remitted to the BTr to P40.17 billion. Had LandBank been included, the total dividends for 2018 would have been P48 billion.
According to the DOF-CAG, the dividends totaling P40,178,634,651.87 remitted by GOCCs in 2018 represent a 32 percent jump from the P30.46 billion collected in 2017.
Covering the period from July 2016 to May 2019, the total cash dividend collections under the Duterte administration now amounts to P109.8 billion, the DOF-CAG said.
Dominguez has attributed the significantly higher dividend remittances under the Duterte administration to the efficient monitoring of, and fiscal discipline instilled in, GOCCs by the DOF-CAG as well as by other finance officials sitting on the respective boards of these state-run firms.
According to Dominguez, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) under the leadership of Secretary Arthur Tugade also helped ensure that GOCCs under the administrative supervision of the DOTr remitted their dividends to the BTr.
GOCCs are required to declare and remit at least half of their income as dividends to the national government, under Republic Act No. 7656.