President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. will meet with senators Tuesday to discuss how to spur economic growth.
“After the Vin de Honor in the Malacanang, the President and the senators will have a dinner also to explain the priorities of the administration,” said Zubiri, who met with Marcos and House Speaker Martin Romualdez on Friday.
Zubiri said they tackled the government’s priority bills aimed at hastening the growth of the economy and improving the living conditions of every Filipino.
He said they also talked about the ratification of RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership) that will widen the market for Philippine exports.
“We also talked about the Maharlika Investment Fund. I thanked the President for agreeing not to rush this proposed measure to ensure wecan come out with the best provisions [for the sovereign wealth fund bill]. We can also put enough safeguards to protect the funds… [from] corruption or mismanagement,” he said.
“Our promise to the President is that we will work hard to pass thebills that will help make a big impact on our economy but most especially on all our countrymen so that the economic growth is being felt by them as well,” he said.
Bagong Henerasyon party-list Rep. Bernadette Herrera on Sunday said the much-touted economic growth last year would have been more meaningful if its benefits were felt by all Filipinos.
“Economic growth must be inclusive and it must be felt all across the country for all Filipinos,” she said.
She reacted to reports that the Philippine economy grew 7.6 percent in 2022, the highest in more than 40 years, and surpassed the government’s target as domestic consumption remained resilient despite soaring inflation.
But Herrera said many Filipinos have yet to feel the benefits of the strong GDP growth that the country achieved in 2022.
“Unfortunately, reports on the improving economy do not reflect the reality that millions of Filipinos remain poor and have to struggle daily to earn a living,” she said.
Pointing to the latest Social Weather Stations survey, the party-list lawmaker said Filipinos who called themselves poor rose to 51 percent in the fourth quarter of 2022 translating to an estimated 12.9 million Filipinos.
She said this was higher than the 12.6 million or 49 percent recorded in the previous quarter.
Herrera expressed disappointment that many people were saying they did not feel the economic growth because of high electricity rates, slow or unreliable internet connections, an inefficient public transportation system, rising food prices, and stagnating real wages.
“The challenge now for the present administration is to address these valid concerns of our people because economic growth is useless if its benefits do not redound to the entire population,” she said.