MANILA -- World Economic Forum (WEF) President Børge Brende lauded the Philippines Wednesday for its high gross domestic product (GDP) growth, surpassing other countries in Southeast Asia.
“It is incredible --- I think now, Philippines is the fastest growing of the ASEAN countries,” Brende said during a one-on-one dialogue with President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. at the WEF in Davos, Switzerland.
Brende agreed with the President who noted that the country’s GDP growth is still the fastest in the region.
Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said this week that the Philippine government expects a strong full-year GDP growth for 2022, most likely much faster than its growth target of 6.5 to 7.5 percent.
Diokno, who accompanied President Marcos in Switzerland, said that because of the expected slowdown of the global economy, the Philippine economy is forecasted to grow by around 6.5 percent this year.
And that’s still one of the highest, if not the highest, growth projections in the Asia-Pacific Region.
The Philippines’ bustling manufacturing sector, record-low unemployment and stable and resilient banking system can alleviate buffers against external headwinds, all indicating a resilient economy, the finance chief said.
President Marcos told Brende during the dialogue that his government is concentrating on the micro, small and medium enterprise (MSMEs) because they comprise a large part of the economy, similar with most Southeast Asian countries.
“And I think that’s where the growth is coming from,” Marcos said as he noted that his government kept an eye at the country’s unemployment rate amid reports of a recession last year.
“My theory, my belief, and I think I’m right is that, as long as the unemployment rate stays low, then the recessionary forces are something that we can resist. So that’s why I think --- that gives a good foundation for growth,” Marcos said. (PND)