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History and Overview
The Congressional Economic Planning Office (CEPO) served as the think tank of the House of Representatives in the old Congress under Speaker Jose P. Laurel. At that time, it was directly under the Office of the Speaker and was independent of the Standing Congressional Committees. It was tasked to draw up the development and industrialization plan of the Philippines and to provide Congress with technical assistance on economic matters. The CEPO then was headed by Dr. Emmanuel Yap and his deputy, Dr. Alejandro Lichauco, both nationalists and able economists.
Under the 1987 Congress, Speaker Ramon V. Mitra together with Congressman Margarito “Gary” B. Teves and Mr. Hector “Chito” Villanueva revived the aforementioned office renamed as the Congressional Economic Planning Service (CEPS). Under the direct supervision of Representative Teves, who was then Chairman of the Committee on Economic Affairs (CEA), the CEPS became more responsive to the needs of the CEA, concentrating on the formulation of economic bills and resolutions.
In 1990, the Congressional Planning and Budget Office (CPBO) replaced CEPS. While administratively still part of the Secretariat of the House of Representatives, the CPBO became an independent office under the Office of the Speaker (OSPKR) in order to fulfil the vision of the late Speaker Mitra for the CPBO to be a proactive think tank, generating its own ideas and development strategies. The CPBO was given not only the mandate of conducting socioeconomic policy and budget research and of supplying informational foundations for legislation but also the distinct mandate to tie-up economic policy directions/strategies to the prioritization of national expenditures. The CPBO also provided analyses on the Philippine Development Plan, the annual national budget, and other government programs and policy pronouncements. It has also been at the forefront of pro-active legislation and policy advocacy, working in close coordination with the various committees and offices of the House of Representatives.
In January 2010, the CPBO was renamed Congressional Policy and Budget Research Department (CPRBD), in order to clearly define the functions of the Department which involves policy research, and placed under the direct supervision of the Secretary General.
Per Administrative Order No. 05-15, 05 October 2015, the CPBRD was reorganized and once again placed under the direct control and supervision of the OSPKR. Headed by the Deputy Secretary General (more popularly known as the Director General), the CPBRD now consists of two bureaus, namely the Socio-Economic Research Bureau (SERB) and the Budget and Tax Research Bureau (BTRB) and is mandated to provide technical service in the formulation of national economic, fiscal, and social policies.
- The Socio-Economic Research Bureau, headed by the SERB Executive Director, provides technical assistance to the Speaker, House Members, and House Committees in the conceptualization, formulation, review, and evaluation of economic and social policies. The SERB shall have two Services, namely:
The Budget and Tax Research Burea, headed by the BTRB Executive Director, provides technical assistance to the Speaker, House Members, and House Committees in the formulation and review of policies relating to public expenditure management, taxation and tax administration, revenue mobilization, public debt management as well as the fiscal performance of government-owned and controlled corporations and local government units. The BTRB is divided into two Services, namely: