State-owned companies dividend payments were slashed by more than half in the first nine-months of the year, data from the Department of Finance (DOF) revealed.

The DOF reported it collected P53.1 billion from government owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs) in January to September, lower by 60 percent compared with P131.85 billion in the same period last year.

Dividends remitted to the national government hit an all-time high last year at P135.54 billion. The remittances were used to boost the country’s war chest to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

As of September 2022, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) contributed the biggest share at P15.9 billion.

The National Transmission Corp. (TransCo) also remitted P8.32 billion to government coffers.

The Philippine Deposit Insurance Corp. (PDIC) contributed P7.1 billion, while the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) paid out a dividend of P6 billion.

The Philippine Ports Authority contributed P3.76 billion, while the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) remitted P1.7 billion each.

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) and Philippine National Oil Co. Exploration Corp. also paid out dividends of P1.2 billion and P1 billion, respectively.

Lastly, National Power Corp. (NTC) remitted P900 million to the Bureau of the Treasury.

Amid the dwindling dividends, the DOF had proposed to increase the mandatory dividend remittance of GOCCs from 50 percent to 75 percent.

But Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said the planned increase requires amendments to the Dividend Law or Republic Act No. 7656.

Aside from increased minimum rate, Dominguez also proposed a provision in the Dividend Law allowing the government to collect additional dividends from accumulated earnings of GOCCs.

Currently, state firms are required to remit only half of their net income to the Treasury. Based on the DOF data, GOCCs contribute about P56 billion to the government coffers annually.

Source: Manila Bulletin (