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PIA Press Release

PGMA's SONA 2008 to center on subsidy, electricity, food production and infrastructure - Ermita

Manila (10 July) -- President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's State-of-the-Nation Address (SONA) this year will center on government's subsidies for the poor, electricity, food production and infrastructure.

This was revealed by Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita who also said that the President will "gauge whether enough has been achieved" in the above-mentioned areas.

Ermita -- who is also the Presidential Spokesman in concurrent capacity following the transfer of former Press Secretary and Presidential Spokesman Ignacio R. Bunye to the Monetary Board - said the President is now in possession of "accompanying documents" from agencies to help her craft her SONA 2008.

"She will go over it, grade it (the set of documents)" said Ermita.

The hands-on President has been "going through this (SONA preparation) many times," said Ermita, adding that yesterday, President Arroyo discussed the content for the latest SONA for over two hours.

Ermita said the President will center on subsidies, electricity, food production and infrastructure, specifically "to what extent these have been achieved."

President Arroyo will also touch on the roll-on, roll-off (RORO) of the Strong Republic Nautical Highway (SR-NH), and balancing the budget.

There will be both "mid-range and long-range" items, said Ermita, adding that the President will also touch on highways, airports, seaports, plus the electrification of all barangays.

The President's Ten-Point Agenda are as follows:

1. The creation of six million jobs in six years via more opportunities given to entrepreneurs, tripling of the amount of loans for lending to small and medium enterprises, and the development of one to two million hectares of land for agricultural business;

2. The construction of new buildings, classrooms, provision of desks and chairs and books for students and scholarships to poor families;

3. The balancing of the budget;

4. The "decentralization" of progress around the nation through the use of transportation networks like the roll-on, roll-off and the digital infrastructure;

5. The provision of electricity and water supply to barangays nationwide;

6. The decongestion of Metro Manila by forming new cores of government and housing centers in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao;

7. The development of Clark and Subic as the best international service and logistic centers in the region;

8. The automation of the electoral process;

9. A just end to the peace process; and

10. A fair closure to the divisiveness among the Edsa 1, 2 and 3 forces

(PIA-MMIO) [top]

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