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PIA Press Release

Economic gains strong - Sec Teves

Davao City (19 December) -- Finance Secretary Margarito Teves said the country's economic gains remain strong, enough to weather whatever would take place.

The country's economic fundamentals are strong enough to withstand any storm. The continued appreciation of the peso, now almost hitting the P41 to $1 mark is one of the indications that the country's economy is growing stronger.

The Philippine stocks have also recovered tremendously, despite destabilization moves by the anti-Arroyo groups in last month, Secretary Teves said.

The government also boasted a marked increase by 10 percent in direct foreign investments, indicating continued investor confidence in the country following the several state visits of the President abroad.

Government economic planners believe that the Arroyo Administration's determined efforts to balance the budget and improve the country's overall security situation, pushes for growth and development which are factors that boost investors' confidence.

The Arroyo Administration's winning formula is making headway and has been reaping investor confidence and upbeat economic indicators, which are flowing down to the grassroots in terms of jobs, infrastructure and solid social benefits.

The government has come up with measures to ensure efficient tax collections. When there is resources, there will be local infrastructure projects as well as funds for other projects.

The real challenge now is to rein in the budget deficit, with the P125-billion deficit target for this year. However, the government is confident in achieving the fiscal targets towards the end of this year as it continues to seal revenue leakages, run after tax cheats and corrupt officials and sustain the programs for stern fiscal discipline.

The passage of the Senate of the P49-billion supplemental budget would help the government attain the projected budget deficit for this year.

The government also cushioned the impact of destabilization moves and protect the economic gains it had made.

The Administration has also worked hard to stabilize prices of prime commodities especially during this Yuletide season as well as ensure that basic commodities reach the grassroot levels, he said. (PIA) [top]

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