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MANILA, Philippines - Leaders of the House of Representatives assured approval of the proposed 2013 budget by October.
Majority Leader Neptali Gonzales said the chamber would devote two months for budget deliberation so it could be approved and transmitted to the Senate before the congressional break in October.
Discussions at the committee level would take the whole month of August, to be followed by the plenary debates in September, according to Cavite Representative Joseph Emilio Abaya, chairman of the appropriations committee.
"Transmittal to the Senate will be before the October break. That has been the tradition and the schedule has been proven effective," Abaya said.
Malacanang is expected to submit the proposed P2-trillion national budget for 2013 on July 24, a day after the State of the Nation Address of President Benigno Aquino III.
The new budget is 10.5 percent higher than the P1.816-trillion budget for the current fiscal year.
"I think discussions on this budget would be smoother," Gonzales said, adding that the contentious items in the 2012 budget, such as the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT), have proven to be beneficial to the people.
Abaya said he expects questions to focus anew on the big-ticket items such as the budget of the CCT, Department of Education, Department of Agriculture, Department of Health, and Department of Public Works and Highways.
Deliberation on the public private partnership program could also take long being one of the Aquino administration's flagship economic programs, Abaya added.