THE country spent 50 percent less on disaster prevention in 2022 compared to 2021, posting the lowest such spending in four years, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).
The Philippines spent P77.98 billion in 2022 for disaster prevention, a 50.4-percent decrease from P157.26 billion in 2021.
This was the lowest since the P33.99 billion spent for these activities in 2018. The highest recorded expenditure was in 2020 amounting to P280.47 billion.
“Disaster prevention includes activities and measures to avoid existing and new disaster risks. This includes risk prevention in advance of hazardous events and risk prevention in or after a hazardous event,” PSA explained.
Disaster prevention only accounted for 24.7 percent of total disaster risk reduction (DRR) expenditures in 2022.
This is also the lowest share of disaster prevention activities in the country’s DRR spending since 2015. It was in 2020 when disaster prevention expenditures accounted for the highest share in DRR spending of 67.2 percent.
Meanwhile, disaster mitigation posted the highest expenditure amount of P107.97 billion in 2022, indicating an increase of 64.5 percent from P65.63 billion in 2021.
“Disaster mitigation includes activities and measures to reduce or lessen existing disaster risk or to limit the adverse impacts of a hazardous event,” PSA said.
“Activities and measures such as structural measures and construction, non-structural measures, land-use planning, and early warning systems management,” it added.
Disaster mitigation posted its highest growth in 2016 when it grew 236.1 percent to P34.62 billion from the P10.298 billion in 2015.
It accounted for 34.2 percent of total DRR expenditures. This is the highest share it posted since the 45.7-percent share it had in 2018.
In 2022, the country spent a total of P315.888 billion for DRR, a 52.4- percent contraction from the P663.66 billion spent in 2021. This was the lowest since the P214.9 billion spent on DRR pre-pandemic or in 2019.
Based on the data, DRR activities linked to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) was the highest at P137.52 billion, followed by the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management (NDRRM) with P64.498 billion and Official Development Assistance (ODA), P63.675 billion.
DRR expenditures, PSA said, cover activities undertaken to preserve and protect society, the economy and the environment from disasters.
It allows the country to monitor the resources allocated to DRR and demonstrate how investing in DRR saves lives and resources from a cost-benefit economic point of view.