Mexican agencies fail in austerity measures

The agencies with more percentual decreases in the budget for public officer's benefits were the Office of the President (90%), the Welfare Ministry (76%), and the Energy Regulatory Commission (73%); nevertheless, 10 agencies increased their expenses and cancelled the savings of the rest

Mexican agencies fail in austerity measures
English 16/08/2019 19:34 Ivette Saldaña Mexico City Actualizada 19:46

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Austerity measures in President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s administration have not had the same impact among different government agencies, at least not in their spending on bureaucracy benefits during the first semester of the year.

According to information of the Ministry of Finance (SHCP), the resources used to pay for benefits, incentives, supports, and bonuses to employees of the public sector added to MXN $160,339,149,153 million from January to June 2019.

This means that there was a reduction of barely 0.24% compared to the MXN $160,732,334.674 million used in the same sector during the first semester of 2018.

But the behavior and adherence to the austerity strategy were not the same between agencies. Data shows that 21 institutions reduced their expenses, although 10 did otherwise, which basically eliminates the effort and savings of their counterparts.

Among those that did efforts to reduce this kind of expenses are the Office of the President, the Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE), as well as the Welfare and Public Service ministries.

Nevertheless, others were far from the objective, since instead of reducing the payment of benefits, they increased it.

Among the institutions that stand out for increasing the amount of benefits for their employees are the Mexican Institute of Social Service (IMSS), the Institute for Social Security and Services for State Workers (ISSSTE), Pemex, the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE), the branch of Projections and Contributions for the Systems of Basic, Technological, Adults, and Teacher’s Education, and the ministries of Agriculture, Navy, National Defense, Transports and Communications, and Labor, as well as Agrarian Development, in which they used basically all the savings from the other agencies.

 

In many institutions, the expenses of benefits increased despite them being included in the reduction in staff, which, according to information published by EL UNIVERSAL, ascended to 21,000 bureaucrats from December 1st, 2018 to May 15th, 2019.

The report from SHCP detailed that only for bureaucrat benefits in four sectors of the expenses, that is, in Projections and Contributions for the Systems of Basic, Technological, Adults, and Teacher’s Education, Pemex, CFE and IMSS, the expenses increased to MXN $5,571 million.

The highest increase took place in IMSS, with MXN $3,000 million; followed by CFE, with MXN $1,262 million; Projections for Educational Systems, MXN $715 million, and Pemex, with MXN $563 million.

According to the data of the SHCP, there was not a generalized behavior of austerity among agencies; the savings of ones compensated the increases in others.

The main percentual decreases were registered in the budget destined to benefits of public officers took place in the Office of the President, with 90%, passing from MXN $208.5 million to 20.3 million; followed by CRE with 73%, passing from MXN $15 million to $4.5 million; and the Welfare Ministry, with 76% of savings, passing from MXN $833.1 million to $193.4 million.

The Ministry of Public Service reduced its benefits expenses in 60%, passing from MXN $90.3 million to $35.3 million; while the Legal Counsel of the Mexican President reduced it by 63%, from MXN $10.7 million to almost $4 million.

In the budgetary exercise of the first half of this year, it was observed that despite being said that the payment of insurance was going to be eliminated, several are still kept, like those of retirement collectives, institutional life, major medical expense, and civil responsibility.

In addition of other benefits that are still granted, like “support for family life,” economic days, Children’s day, Mother’s Day, Three King’s Day; bonuses for merit, punctuality; benefits for service years, training and development; cultural, social, and sports activities, supports for glasses, wheelchairs and prostheses.
 

 

 

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