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Philippines proposes double-digit growth in defence spending

Total defence spending in the Philippines in 2024, including its core defence budget, will climb to more than USD6 billion, according to Janes Defence Budgets. (Janes Defence Budgets)

The Philippine government has proposed a core 2024 defence budget of PHP233 billion (USD4.1 billion). The budget represents a double-digit increase over the baseline allocation in 2023 and has been announced amid growing tensions between Manila and Beijing.

The new defence budget includes PHP144 billion for personnel expenses, PHP69 billion for maintenance and other operating expenses, and PHP17 billion for capital outlay. Funding for capital outlay does not include appropriations through the long-running Revised Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Modernization Program (RAFPMP).

Including the RAFPMP and other defence funding streams, Janes Defence Budgets assesses the total 2024 allocation for the Philippine Department of National Defense (DND) could grow to more than PHP366 billion.

According to documents issued by the Philippine Department of Budget and Management, the 2024 defence budget provides the Philippine Army with nearly half the annual expenditure. The army will receive PHP121 billion or 52% of the baseline defence budget, with nearly PHP95 billion of this set aside for personnel expenses.

The Philippine Air Force will receive PHP44.7 billion (or 19%) and the Philippine Navy has been allocated PHP41 billion (or 18% of the core defence allocation). The AFP general headquarters receives nearly PHP15 billion and the Government Arsenal, the Philippines' state-owned small-arms and ammunition manufacturer, is allocated nearly PHP2 billion.

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