Gov't produces tangible results to ease poverty: Palace

By Azer Parrocha

January 8, 2019, 7:13 pm

MANILA -- The government did not wait until the second half of the term of President Rodrigo R. Duterte to come up with desired economic gains, Malacañang said on Tuesday, in response to a former president’s advice to produce “tangible results” to ease poverty.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made this remark after House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo urged the government to speed up the implementation of programs that will bear results, which “people can feel in their day-to-day lives.”

Arroyo, a former president, said government should also prevent a repeat of the rising inflation the country experienced last year.

“We note Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has recognized inflation is on a downtrend,” Panelo said in a statement, noting that economic managers have implemented measures to address inflation.

“In taking action on the issue of inflation, we saw the collaboration of the Executive and the House leadership. This is a good case of statesmanship demanded by our people from their elected leaders,” he added.

Panelo pointed out that Arroyo shared the economic managers’ pronouncements that tangible results must be done and did not wait until the second half of Duterte’s term to come up with economic gains.

He noted that the Duterte administration did not waste time in enhancing workers' employability and competitiveness.

Citing data from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Panelo said government generated 826,000 net employment with services and industry as main drivers for growth in 2018.

Panelo said the government also expects to create more jobs this year and the coming years through its "Build, Build, Build" infrastructure program.

He stressed that Arroyo should also bear in mind that the Duterte presidency has achieved more in terms of policy reforms and infrastructure projects than the past two administrations.

“The Speaker must be aware that the two and half years of the Duterte presidency has achieved more than the combined terms of the Arroyo and Aquino presidencies in terms of major policy reforms and flagship infrastructure projects duly processed and ready for groundbreaking, and some already near completion,” Panelo said.

At present, the average inflation rate under the Duterte administration is at 3.6 percent, which falls within the government’s target range of 2 to 4 percent.

Duterte’s economic managers vowed to continue exerting all efforts to bring down inflation and ensure price stability all year round. (PNA)