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Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program 2

In: Historical Events

Submitted By wazzup
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Abstract
When the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program was designed, the government publicly promised to limit to five years the giving of the education and health grants. This five-year limit is almost over for the first set of beneficiaries by 2013. The natural policy question then is: Would it be wise to keep the promise or would an extension be better? This paper presents five arguments and evidence why the extension of the program is better than keeping the promise to limit it to five years. The five arguments include: (a) the problems that the Pantawid had been designed to address continue to be high priority issues; (b) Pantawid remains credible as an effective and valuable instrument for poverty alleviation in the short run and for reducing the transmission of intergenerational poverty in the long run; (c) the extension could provide great opportunities to produce a much greater positive impact on the welfare of the poor; (d) the extension could buy much-needed time for developing and implementing an adequate and workable transition promotion strategy to help beneficiaries outgrow their need for CCT assistance and, therefore, facilitate its termination; and (e) secondary education enrollment and completion produces high returns in terms of increased earning and is achievable with a moderate amount of subsidy. The paper ends with cautionary notes including articulating that Pantawid remains a bridging program; the need for a careful study to ensure affordability and maximize its cost effectiveness; the need to continue to generate better estimates of key parameters such as income elasticities; and possible phasing for affordability and recognition of possible supply-side constraints.

Abstract
This study reviews and evaluates the major contributory and noncontributory social protection programs that are currently in place as part of the government’s portfolio of social protection interventions, including social insurance (SSS, GSIS, PhilHealth), social welfare programs (e.g., Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps, Food-for-School Program, NFA rice price subsidy, SEA-K) and social safety nets (e.g., Pantawid Kuryente), and active labor market programs (e.g., PGMA scholarships, job search assistance, and job creation). The evaluation focuses on four aspects: program coverage, size of the benefits/transfers, cost-effectiveness/efficiency, and financial sustainability. The major findings of the study include: (i) the bulk of national government spending on social safety nets went to the NFA rice price subsidy, a program that has been proven to be the least effective in reaching the poor; (ii) the objectives as well as intended beneficiaries of a number of programs (e.g., Food-for-School Program, school feeding programs, and 4Ps) overlap suggesting the need to consolidate some of them; (iii) the 4Ps appears to be superior than the FSP and supplemental feeding programs in addressing needs of chronic poor and is worth expanding and implementing on a sustained basis given large numbers of chronic poor households; (iv) the social security system, the social health insurance scheme, and many of the noncontributory social protection programs provide poor coverage of informal sector which includes the transient poor and the near poor; (v) hastily designed programs launched in response to crisis situations like the Tulong para kay Lolo at Lola and the Pantawid Kuryente are usually not very effective in reaching the poor and the vulnerable; (vi) public workfare program appears to be the most appropriate intervention to address needs of informal sector when there is an economy-wide crisis; (vii) expanding the coverage of the Sponsored Program of PhilHealth and improving the selection of beneficiaries are critical in providing the poor financial protection against illness and in making the public health system sustainable; (viii) there is a need to sustain the structural reforms at SSS and GSIS, including parametric reforms, design of benefit package and payment systems, and improvement in corporate governance, that have already been started in order to strengthen the financial sustainability of these institutions and reducing the contingent liabilities that the national government will face in the future, (ix) establishment of a centrally managed targeting system anchored on proxy means test will be cost effective if used for the major targeted programs; and (x) although national government spending on social protection has increased in response to the global financial crisis, national government’s spending on social welfare programs, social safety nets, and active labor market programs compares unfavorably with that of other countries.

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