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PIA Press Release
2008/10/10

PGMA sees global credit crunch not as a crisis but an opportunity for RP

Manila (10 October) -- President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said that the global financial turmoil sweeping the world should also be an opportunity for Philippine agribusiness.

In her speech keynoting the Agrilink, Foodlink, Aqualink 2008 at the World Trade Center in Pasay City yesterday morning, the President admitted that the U.S. financial crisis appeared graver than we have anticipated, any slowdown or even recession in the U.S. is not good for the global economy.

Just the same, President said, the Philippines economy is relatively in good shape. "Thanks to our fiscal reforms, that manifested a seven percent plus GDP growth last year. Our debt-to-GDP ratio has gone down, and our credit ratings reflect it," the President said.

She added that even with the recent weekly increase in the price of rice and oil, also brought about by the US financial crisis, "we have created almost 7 million jobs in 7 years, many of them in agribusiness. Investments continue to come in despite volatility in the global markets."

"As a result of our economic turnaround, nagawa rin nating mamuhunan sa pinakamahahalagang sektor gaya ng agrikultura, pagkain at pangingisda upang maginhawahan ang mabagsik na hagupit sa ating mahihirap ng matataas na presyo ng pagkain at langis na tumama nitong taon," the President said.

"Bukod dito, namumuhunan tayo sa pinakamalawak sa kasaysayan na pagmoderno ng imprastraktura gaya ng kalsada kasama ang farm-to-market roads, tulay at pantalan," she added.

She reiterated her main reason for becoming President of the Philippines: to change the strategic paradigm for the Philippine economy and pledged, "Walang humpay tayong nagtatrabaho upang tugunan ang mga hamong dala ng paghina ng pandaigdigang ekonomiya na sinamahan ng pagtaas ng presyo ng langis at pagkain."

"Namumuhunan din tayo sa mas pinalaking edukasyon, kasama na ang enrollment sa agriculture na binibigyan natin ng maraming scholarship, kasama na ang kalinga sa kalusugan at ibang panlipunang serbisyo," the President said.

"Samantala, binabalanse natin itong mga kinakailangang pamumuhunan with a commitment to meet our fiscal obligations," she added. (PIA-MMIO) [top]

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