The administration of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. is managing the economy well, as shown by the higher-than-expected growth in the first quarter of 2023, Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said Friday.
He made the statement in reaction to the report of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) that the economy grew by 6.4 percent in the first three months of this year.
The House leader assured the people that the economy remains on the high-growth path.
Romualdez pointed out that the high-growth quarters and the first quarter of this year represent the first nine months of the Marcos administration.
“The average economic expansion during that period is 7.07 percent, which is a respectable growth rate that is slightly higher than the median of last year’s growth target of 6.5 percent and 7.5 percent. So the economy is in good hands,” he said.
The Speaker added that the government is expected to ramp up spending, especially on infrastructure and social services.
“The government will be the lead driver of economic activities and job and income generation,” he said.
Romualdez also said an International Monetary Fund (IMF) delegation was impressed by the economic performance of the Philippines and government policies meant to ensure sustained economic growth would benefit ordinary Filipinos.
The Speaker met with the IMF mission members and briefed them on the pro-poor reforms being implemented by the administration to ensure that no one will be left behind in the country’s post-pandemic economic recovery.
The IMF was represented by Mission Chief Jay Peiris; Resident Representative Ragnar Gudmundsson; Senior Economist Yinqiu Lu; and Economist Tristan Hennig.
“From our discussions, I could confidently say that the IMF mission members were impressed with the Philippines’ economic performance and the government’s economic agenda. They expressed confidence that the Philippines will continue to grow strongly in the years ahead,” he added.
Meanwhile, Albay Rep. Joey Sarte Salceda on Friday reiterated his call for the government to undertake a “spending catch-up plan” to “fortify the country’s economy from global headwinds and reap more benefits out of the budget earlier.”
“I still believe that we need a spending catch-up plan to release funds for projects faster next quarter,” said Salceda, chair of the House committee on ways and means.
Also on Friday, Senator Christopher Go lauded the administration, saying that the government is on the right track, and reiterated his commitment to support programs aimed at uplifting the lives of the poor. With Macon Ramos-Araneta