News Release

MIF vital to accelerate implementation of gov’t infra projects – National Treasurer

The Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF) of the administration of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. is vital in accelerating the implementation of infrastructure projects of the national government, National Treasurer Rosalia de Leon said.

In a news forum on Saturday in Quezon City, De Leon noted that the MIF would allow the government to generate more funding for key infrastructure development programs that would be beneficial to the country.

“Mayroon po tayong 194 projects na na-identify na po ng NEDA (National Economic and Development Authority) costing about Php9 trillion. So with this Maharlika Investment Fund, mas mapapadali po natin at mas mapapabilis po natin ang pag-implement ng mga infrastructure projects na ito sa tulong na rin po ng ating private sector,” she said.

“Ito rin po, magiging isang vehicle po ito para makapag-attract po tayo ng mga other funds from offshore, from the international funding community dahil they can invest into this fund na mapupunta naman po sa mga priority projects ng ating administrasyon,” the National Treasurer added.

De Leon reiterated that the concept of a sovereign wealth fund is not new, with many countries having already established their own investment fund scheme.

“Bakit kapag, ‘di ba, sovereign wealth fund, dapat po you’re in a surplus, mayroon pong excess income? Hindi naman po ganoon lagi ang situation dahil ang konsepto po ng isang sovereign wealth fund, nag-evolve na po through the years dahil ginagamit nga po nila ang ganitong klaseng mga funding mechanisms para to attract mga inflows, mga private capital to be able to co-invest into the domestic and also into the national government investment funding sources,” she noted.

De Leon also allayed fears of critics that the MIF would eventually deplete the funds intended for loans to agriculture and non-agriculture sector and various industries as the initial investment would be sourced from government financial institutions such as the Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK), Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) and Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

“Iyon pong LANDBANK mayroon po silang about 1.3 trillion na investible funds. Iyon pong ibibigay nila sa MIF na 50 billion. Wala pa pong mga 3 percent po iyon. So, malaki pa po ang pwedeng magamit ng LANDBANK to be able to cater to the requirements po ng ating agricultural sector na ating mga farmers and fisherfolks,” De Leon noted.

“Sa DBP naman po, 25 billion – that’s also just about 2.7 percent of their 850 billion investible funds. So, again marami pa pong pondo that would be available para po tugunan ang mga pangangailangan po ng ating industriya, ng ating mga businessmen, ng ating private sector…even our MSMEs (micro, small, and medium enterprises) para po matugunan again ang kanilang mga pangangailangan,” she added.

For the BSP, De Leon said it would be contributing its dividends to the MIF for the first two years.

“So dividends po iyon – meaning dineclare po sa national government ang kanilang dividends tapos po iyon po ang gagamitin ng national government to be able to contribute doon po sa Maharlika Investment Fund – iyon lang po in the first two years,” she said.

The National Treasurer said the MIF bill passed by both Houses of Congress has ample safeguards against graft and corruption.

“Dito po sa naipasa na batas, marami pong tinatawag na safeguards to be able to protect public money, at the same time iyon pong deter any acts of fraud, graft and corruption. Unang-una po, meron po diyan mga audits. Alam natin magiging under po ito ng COA (Commission on Audit) at mayroon pa po doon sa internal auditor na dapat po, that would be looking over and conducting regular audits on MIF,” she pointed out.

De Leon added that there will be an external auditor who will also look into the use of the funds in line with rules and regulations on the investments of the funds, noting that Congress also formed an oversight committee to monitor the MIF.

“Bawat section po dito sa ating (panukalang) batas, it all pertains sa mga safeguards to make sure na pinoprotektahan nga po ang mga pondo ng bayan para nang sa gayon, it would be directed towards the objectives why the fund was also setup,” she noted. #