DOF eyeing faster growth in Duterte’s final quarter – Manila Bulletin

The government’s chief economic director has vowed to “redouble” efforts in the final months of the Duterte administration to claw back lost opportunities incurred by the economy during the protracted pandemic.

Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said their goal in the last quarter of the Duterte administration was to grow the economy at a much faster rate to recover opportunities lost during the coronavirus pandemic. two years.

Armed with the passage and implementation of its hard-won reforms, the Duterte administration “will continue to work until the last hour of our mandate to contribute whatever we can to our strong economic resurgence,” said Dominguez at a virtual gathering of Rotarians.

“The reward for all the work we are doing now is a brighter future for the next generation of Filipinos,” Dominguez said in his recorded video message during the first day of the Rotary International District 3870 Virtual Conference.

Dominguez said conditions for the Philippines’ rapid post-pandemic growth had never been better, thanks in large part to President Duterte’s strong political will to push forward groundbreaking reforms that had been stuck in the legislative mill for decades. decades.

“The election season will not be a problem. We have a long history of orderly and peaceful transfers of power. We will convey to the next administration a comprehensive fiscal consolidation plan to bring the country back to its high growth trajectory,” said Dominguez.

With the pandemic now easing and the Covid-19 vaccination program unfolding at a rapid pace, Dominguez said the country was on track for a strong recovery from the pandemic that broke out in March 2020. .

“Our risk management strategy resulted in annual growth of 5.6% in 2021, exceeding targets and market expectations. This year, we expect our economy to grow by 7-9%,” he said.

In 2021, revenue collection was already 5% higher than in 2020, while total merchandise trade and remittances were also above pre-pandemic levels, all signaling a return to activity. robust economy, said Dominguez.

Dominguez said he plans to fully return revenue collection to pre-pandemic levels this year.

Additionally, the Duterte administration marked its last full year with foreign direct investment (FDI) hitting a record $10.5 billion as it continues to gain ground in reducing unemployment, Dominguez said.

The only problem with that bullish outlook, Dominguez said, is the ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis, which has amplified the dislocations created by the country’s two-year battle with the pandemic.

He said the Philippines, like all other countries, will most likely experience high levels of inflation due to the impact of the crisis on oil and commodity prices.

“The Duterte administration is watching developments closely and doing everything possible to mitigate the impact of rising oil and food prices on our people,” Dominguez said.

“Our priority is to support vulnerable sectors of our society against the adverse effects of conflict-induced inflationary pressures,” he added.

The support will take the form of cash grants for the bottom 50% of the population, fuel subsidies for the public transport sector and fuel rebates for small farmers and fishermen, Dominguez said.

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