Quantcast
Latest Stories

MV Pangilinan: Allow private sector to actively help end poverty

By ,

A top businessman on Wednesday called on Malacañang to include the private sector in mapping out fresh antipoverty programs as lawmakers blamed income inequality for chronic poverty amid robust economic growth.

Manuel V. Pangilinan, chairman of the Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co., said the government should allow the private sector to take an active role in ensuring that economic growth was shared and enjoyed by all classes.

“The imperative is inclusive, not exclusionary, growth. Business and government need to work together to identify areas that offer the higher levels of employment and income to our people—agriculture and tourism, for instance,” Pangilinan said.

Work in progress

Malacañang said eradicating poverty in the country was “not an overnight thing.”

President Aquino’s spokesman, Edwin Lacierda, largely blamed the high level of poverty incidence on the lackluster performance of the agricultural-fishery sector.

“But again, this (defeating poverty) is not overnight. This is a work in progress and hence, for that reason, we also need support from both houses of Congress,” Lacierda said.

He also said the NCSB report was already dated. “These are all historical data. So the survey … the press conference on the poverty incidence was (based) on the first semester of 2012,” he said, but added:

“We have already identified the areas where we need to improve on: in the agricultural sector.”

Pangilinan added that government should provide the guidance, encouragement and rewards. “Business should mobilize the resources for development. The franchise to inclusive growth is not the exclusive province of either business or government—neither can accomplish it alone,” he said in a text message.

Pangilinan was reacting to the report of the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) on Tuesday that poverty incidence had remained unchanged since 2006 amid high economic growth. The NSCB said poverty incidence in the first semester of 2012 was 27.9 percent, “practically unchanged” from the same period in 2009 (28.6 percent) and in 2006 (28.8 percent).

Trickle down doesn’t work

“Even if we build all the infrastructure that we need, only the rich and educated will benefit the most because they will know how to use them properly and productively, unlike the poor and uneducated,” said Sen. Ralph Recto in a text message.

He said only the educated class or the entrepreneurs and professionals would benefit from economic growth, leading to income inequality and the rich getting richer and the poor poorer.

“Trickle down really does not work. High growth even leads to greater inequality even when it brings significant numbers out of poverty,” said Akbayan Rep. Walden Bello.

Recto said the government had the tools to break the paradox: Higher spending (specifically in education) and taxation.

Recto pointed out that expanding the middle class would also help in spreading the wealth across all classes. “We must allow for more private sector investments in infrastructure, factories and food production to create more jobs and build the middle class. Government does not create jobs. It is the private sector,” he said.

He said the country needed to grow at a faster rate of at least 10 percent for a long period of time to reduce poverty to less than 10 percent by 2020.

To spur agri growth

Both Bello and Recto said that the centerpiece antipoverty tool of the government, the conditional cash transfer program, had been helpful. Bello said the results would be felt in the medium to long term.

Lacierda said the challenge was to spur growth in agriculture to create more jobs, increase production and ensure that the production translates to a greater income for farmers since the bulk of the population was still in the agricultural sector.

Looking at the bright side, Lacierda noted that private investments had increased, and that public infrastructure spending in 2012 was around P250 billion.

Reacting to the NSCB data, Norio Usui, senior country economist for the Asian Development Bank, said on Wednesday that the government must solve the problem of jobless growth if it hoped to reduce poverty.


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Economy , Manuel V. Pangilinan , Philippines , Poverty , Poverty Alleviation




Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. 12 senators on Napoles ‘pork’ list, says Lacson
  2. Save the queen? Aide takes fall for Enrile, Gigi Reyes
  3. Palace prepared to charge its allies
  4. Senator’s kickback from pork bigger than those of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – Lacson
  5. Napoles turnaround alarms whistle-blowers
  6. What Went Before: Malacañang allies alleged involvement in pork scam
  7. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  8. Timeline: Napoles tell-all
  9. HK apology: Why Estrada and not Aquino?
  10. Cedric Lee’s cohort flies out of PH despite look-out order – De Lima
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  3. Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  4. Bernice Lee arrested by NBI team
  5. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  8. Reckless driver endangered lives of Aquino, entourage–report
  9. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  10. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  8. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  9. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
  10. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
Advertisement

News

  • Nepal officials go to Everest to try to end crisis
  • Escudero ready to defend self should name appear in Napoles’ list
  • Obama calls for peaceful end to island dispute
  • Russia not abiding by agreement on Ukraine—Obama
  • Magnitude 6.7 quake off British Columbia coast
  • Sports

  • Promoters Dela Hoya, Arum in talks for Pacquiao-Alvarez—report
  • Benzema guides Madrid to 1-0 win over Bayern
  • Suns’ Goran Dragic win NBA’s Most Improved Player award
  • Heat go up 2-0, hold off Bobcats 101-97
  • Ronaldo shakes off injury fears to play Bayern
  • Lifestyle

  • Photos explore dynamics of youths’ sexual identity
  • 12th Philippine Food Expo set at the World Trade Center
  • No tourist draw, Malang the croc will remain wild
  • The best flavors of summer in one bite, and more
  • Homemade yogurt, bread blended with pizza, even ramen
  • Entertainment

  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • Sony developing live-action Barbie comedy
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Return of ‘Ibong Adarna’
  • Practical Phytos plans his future
  • Business

  • Facebook profits triple as mobile soars
  • Insular Honors Sales Performers at Testimonial Rites
  • Apple increases stock buyback, will split stock
  • Cost-recovery provisions for affected gencos urged
  • This time, BIR goes after florists
  • Technology

  • Enrile in Masters of the Universe, Lord of the Rings?
  • Top Traits of Digital Marketers
  • No truth to viral no-visa ‘chronicles’
  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 24, 2014
  • Talking to Janet
  • Respite
  • Bucket list
  • JPII in 1981: walking a tightrope
  • Global Nation

  • PH-HK relations repaired, but families of victims still being courted
  • Filipinos in Middle East urged to get clearance before returning
  • PH seeks ‘clearer assurance’ from US
  • China and rivals sign naval pact to ease maritime tensions
  • What Went Before: Manila bus hostage crisis
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement