SUBSIDIES extended to government-owned and -controlled corporations (GOCCs) declined 19% to P184.8 billion in 2021, with the bulk of the total going to the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth).

PhilHealth in 2021 received P80.9 billion, up 29.8%.

The National Irrigation Administration received P38.3 billion in subsidies, up 13.8%.

Last year’s total declined as subsidies extended to the Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) fell to P476 million from P23.3 billion a year earlier.

Subsidies to other government corporations, excluding financial institutions and major non-financial government corporations, slipped by 18.9% to P106.6 billion.

The government subsidizes state-run firms to cover operational expenses not supported by their revenue.

In December, subsidies given to GOCCs fell by nearly half year on year to P21.4 billion, down 48.1%.

The National Housing Authority received the most subsidies in December with P8.1 billion.

The National Irrigation Administration got P4.1 billion, PhilHealth P4 billion and Philippine National Railways P1.2 billion.

Other top recipients in December included the National Electrification Administration with P756 million, the Philippine Coconut Authority P705 million and LANDBANK P476 million.

GOCCs that did not receive budget support in December were Small Business Corp., Philippine Postal Corp., the Philippine Fisheries Development Authority, the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp., the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority, the Bases Conversion Development Authority, the Local Water Utilities Administration, the National Food Authority, and the National Home Mortgage Finance Corp.

Subsidies in 2020 had increased 13.6% to P229 billion. — Jenina P. Ibañez