Transition talks with Marcos camp ‘already started,” says DOF”s Dominguez

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III said Tuesday the Duterte administration’s economic team has already started transition talks with the camp of leading presidential candidate, Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

“Already started,” Dominguez told GMA News Online, when asked when the incumbent administration’s economic team began briefing the incoming administration.

The Finance chief, however, clarified that the briefing with the Marcos camp started “several weeks ago when we briefed teams of other candidates.”

In February, Dominguez expressed willingness to sit down with all the presidential candidates to discuss how to manage the trillions of pesos in government debt the next presidency will inherit from the Duterte administration.

He said the Department of Finance (DOF) is preparing its fiscal consolidation proposal which will likely include tax hikes to repay the country’s increasing debt.

As of end-March 2022, the national government’s running debt balanced widened further to a new record-high of P12.68 trillion, 4.8% higher than the P12.09 trillion recorded as of end-February 2022 amid continued borrowing efforts to boost the state’s war chest for COVID-19 recovery measures coupled with a weaker local currency during the period.

The tandem of Marcos Jr. and Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte are leading the presidential and vice presidential race, according to partial and unofficial count of votes from nationwide election returns as shown in the Comelec Transparency Server.

Should he be proclaimed as the next president, Marcos Jr.’s administration will inherit the debt accumulated by the outgoing administration.

Meanwhile, Malacanang has created a body that would supervise the transition of power to the next administration, which is chaired by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea. — Ted Cordero/RSJ, GMA News

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