This is another blow to the Arroyo regime’s dream of this country having a first-world status by 2010.
The National Statistical Coordination Board (NCSB) has reported that the number of poor families have increased from the period between 2003 and 2006, from 24.4% in 2003 to 26.9%, but lower than that recorded in 2000, at 27.5%. That means 27 out of 100 families are poor, or an increase of 3.8 million poor Filipinos from 2003.
National Economic and Development Authority’s Director General, Augusto Santos (and Romulo Neri’s successor) attributed this increase to “increasing prices and/or insufficient rise in personal income.” Other contributors included the expanded Value-Added Tax (eVAT) imposed in 2005, higher oil prices, typhoons, and a population growth rate of 2%.
(NB: I think this is a good indication of eVAT’s immediate impact on Filipinos.)
Santos also believes that the 7.3% GDP recorded for last year will help alleviate poverty. Uhm. Since 2001, our GDP is increasing (so the Fortress claims), and so thus poverty incidence. It doesn’t add up. My math must be failing me (not that I am good at it).
Lorelei Fajardo, what’s your take on this one? Blame the opposition and destabilizers? Lozada? The Senate?
I remember that series of commercials with the icky tagline “ramdam mo na ba ang pag-asenso?” I wonder what 27.6 million poor Filipinos ha d felt when they saw/heard that commercial (pilosopo: syempre wala kasi di nila napanood/narinig, poor nga eh, di ba?). No wonder they are no longer airing it. (Is it in YouTube?)
For the past few days, my mother is complaining that prices of some goods have increased. Have you experienced this? Can you itemize?
And don’t forget to vote at the poll (at the sidebar), in case you haven’t yet.
And add more blows to Gloria Arroyo’s Enchanted Kingdom:
* Peter Wallace tells everyone it is time to face the facts. And this is a strong indictment:
We have an economy today that is skewed to favor a few. The growth is not widespread and is not reaching the bulk of the people. It is an economy that is losing its middle class (it shrank in 2007). One could say that it takes time to reduce the huge inequality that exists, or that the momentum toward that is there. But after six and a half years, surely there should have been some improvement, not a worsening.
* RP poverty up due to weak tax take, corruption – ADB study Despite the eVAT, “corruption undermines tax collection, reduced resources for and quality of infrastructure development.”