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Philippines Threshold Program

The Philippines Threshold Program's end date was May 30, 2009. The Threshold Program is now closed.

MCC selected the Government of the Republic of the Philippines to participate in the Threshold Program in FY 2006. When the Philippines was selected as threshold eligible, it did not meet the criteria in the Ruling Justly category, failing the Control of Corruption indicator. To assist the with its threshold program proposal, MCC provided the government with an indicator analysis highlighting key policy constraints that included those raised by the eligibility indicator institutions and tracked in the current indicator scorecard.

The Philippines threshold program targeted policy areas measured by two MCC eligibility indicators, Control of Corruption and Fiscal Policy. The Philippines’ threshold program included two components that focused on reducing corruption throughout the government and improving authorities’ ability to monitor, expose, and sanction corruption practices.

Philippines Threshold Program Implementation

The Philippine government and USAID, which was responsible for implementing the program on MCC’s behalf, signed the threshold program agreement in July 2006. The program concluded in May 2009. As the program administrator, USAID managed program operations and oversaw the program implementing partners:  Management Systems International (MSI) and the Asia Foundation. 

Program Achievements

The threshold program provided extensive training, support for inter-agency collaboration, and IT equipment to the investigators, lawyers and prosecutors in charge of pursuing corruption, tax evasion, and smuggling cases. To improve transparency and data-sharing, the program connected all seven ombudsman enforcement offices throughout the country using a local area network, and linked the remaining non-computerized BIR district and regional offices nationwide to the headquarters office. 

The program also significantly improved the capacity of government anticorruption and revenue generating agencies. More than 3,000 investigators, prosecutors, lawyers, revenue officers, and other staff were trained on various anticorruption, anti-tax evasion and anti-smuggling techniques. All nine performance targets were exceeded, most notably:

  • A 55 percent conviction rate against high-ranking public officials (against a target of 40 percent); 
  • 688 public grievances mediated in the Ombudsman’s Office (from a baseline of zero); 
  • 140 corruption complaints against a target of 116 cases filed against Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Bureau of Customs (BOC), and other Department of Finance (DOF) officials; 
  • A 16.5 percent increase in corporate income tax returns filed (against a target of 10 percent); 
  • About 117 complaints filed against tax evaders and 95 complaints filed against smugglers, exceeding the targets of 116 and 61 cases, respectively.