November 29, 2023
MANILA – The Senate on Tuesday approved on third and final reading the P5.7 trillion proposed national budget for fiscal year 2024.
With 21 voting in the affirmative, no negative votes, and one abstention, House Bill No. (HBN) 8980, which contains the national budget for next year, was approved by senators.
Following the House of Representatives and Senate approval of the 2024 budget, a bicameral conference committee is expected to begin shortly.
The committee will collaborate and come up with a reconciled version of the national allocation for next year.
Once reconciled, the bill will be returned to both chambers of Congress for ratification.
The ratified version will be transmitted to the Office of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. for his signing.
Committing to their goal of passing the bill containing the P5.7 trillion budget on time, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri previously said the national budget may be up for Marcos’ signing by the first or second week of December 2023.
Senator Sonny Angara, chairperson of the chamber’s committee on finance and sponsor of the 2024 General Appropriations Bill, enumerated the amendments introduced by his fellow senators.
He, however, made zero mention of confidential funds which became controversial during the budget deliberations in both chambers of Congress.