By Azer Parrocha
MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. believes that forging new networks and partnerships will open up the Philippines to “limitless” opportunities in a global economy that is dealing with both conflicts and the Covid-19 pandemic.
In his recent vlog, Marcos gave a recap of his visit to Davos, Switzerland last week to participate in the 2023 World Economic Forum (WEF).
Marcos’ trip yielded beneficial outcomes such as new trade and investment opportunities, forged key partnerships to support the country’s development program and increased the level of cooperation among various countries.
“Ang mga bagong pagkakaibigang aming nabuo kasama ang mga respetadong negosyante at economic business giant mula sa iba’t-ibang larangan at panig ng mundo ay napakagandang balita para sa ating bumabangong ekonomiya (The new friendships we have formed with respected entrepreneurs and economic business giants from different fields and parts of the world are very good news for our booming economy),” he said in his vlog.
“The opportunities are limitless when we open up to new networks and partnerships,” he added.
He said the WEF’s theme “Cooperation in a Fragmented World”, which was similar to his call for unity in the Philippines, underscored the importance of nations making a joint effort to address global problems such as immediate economic, energy and food crises while laying the groundwork for a more sustainable, resilient world.
“Ang ibig sabihin ay papaano natin ipagkakaisa ang lahat ng mundo ngayon dahil mukhang naghihiwalay ulit dahil sa dami ng krisis (It means how can we unite the whole world now that it seems to be falling apart again due to the number of crises),” he said.
“Ibig sabihin rin nito ay hindi Pilipinas lamang ay may mga problemang hinaharap lalo na sa pagtaas ng presyo ng bilihin, pagkain. Ito ay pandaigdigang suliranin na kahit ang mga pinakamahuhusay na ekonomista ay pilit na inilulutas (This also means that it is not only the Philippines that is facing problems, especially with the increase in the price of goods, food. This is a global problem that even the best economists are struggling to solve),” he added.
Marcos acknowledged that there is no silver bullet to the world’s problems, but added that working together may help solve some of them.
“Tayong lahat ay konektado. Sa problema, at lalo na sa solusyon…Hindi lang pala pang Pilipinas ang ating mensahe ng pagkakaisa at pagtutulungan, ito rin ang sigaw ng buong mundo tungo sa tuloy-tuloy na pagbabangon, tungo sa mas maunlad na bukas (We are all connected. In terms of problems, and especially solutions…Our message of unity and cooperation is not just in the Philippines, it is also the cry of the whole world towards continuous revival, towards a more prosperous tomorrow),” he added.
Meanwhile, the President welcomed the WEF as an opportunity to show the world that the Philippines is leading economic recovery and performance in the Asia-Pacific and in the whole world.
“Tayo rin ay nabigyan ng pagkakataon ihayag ang mga pamamaraang ginagawa natin sa Pilipinas sa gitna ng krisis na ito. Ito marahil ay sa kadahilanang kumpara sa ibang bansa, naging maganda ang performance natin sa pagbabangon nitong nakaraang taon kaya tuloy-tuloy lang ang ating pamahalaan sa pagpupursigi tungo sa pagbabangon (We were also given the opportunity to reveal the methods we are doing in the Philippines in the midst of this crisis. This is probably due to the fact that compared to other countries, we have had a good performance in recovery this past year, so our government continues to strive towards recovery),” he said.
He also said economic leaders and investors were supportive of his administration’s plan to establish the Philippines’ first-ever sovereign wealth fund.
“Nagkaroon din kami ng pagkakataon ipahiwatig at komunsulta sa ibang economic leaders at investors tungkol sa ating hangarin magkaroon nitong tinatawag na sovereign wealth fund…Maganda naman ang kanilang pagtanggap sa posibilidad ng pagkakaroon natin ng ganyang pondo (We also had the chance to consult with economic leaders and investors about our desire to establish a sovereign wealth fund. They had a favorable response to the possibility of creating such a fund),” he said.
“Naintindihan naman nila na sa kanilang palagay, kung maayos ang patakbo ng pondong ito ay malaki ang maitutulong niyan (They understand our purpose and believe that it will greatly help the country if it is properly managed),” he added.
House Bill (HB) 6608 or the proposed Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF) Act seeks the establishment of an independent fund that will be sourced from the investible funds of select government financial institutions (GFIs), contributions of the national government, declared dividends of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and other funding sources.
The proposed MIF shall be used to invest on a strategic and commercial basis in a manner designed to promote fiscal stability for economic development and strengthen the top-performing GFIs through additional investment platforms that will help attain the national government’s priority plans, the bill said.
HB 6608, certified by Marcos as urgent, was approved by the House of Representatives on final reading on Dec. 15, 2022, and was transmitted to the Senate on Dec. 19, 2022. (PNA)