LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines -Presumptive president Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr comes to power with the Philippines’ pandemic scars, the high inflation caused by the Russia-Ukraine war, and a P12-trillion debt presenting major tests to his leadership abilities, Albay lawmaker Joey Sarte Salceda told Rappler in an interview on Wednesday, May 11.
“The next administration is facing a big problem with a P12-trillion international debt. Globally, the economy is slowing due to COVID debt scars while commodity prices are rising due to supply chain and production issues due to Russia -Ukraine. We need all hands on the paddle to get the canoe out of the storm,” Salceda said after he was proclaimed at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Albay.
“Anyone who assumes in the presidency will have a hard time because we are entering staglation,” Salceda told Rappler in a mix of Filipino and English after his proclamation at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of Albay. He explained stagflation as a combination of high inflation rates and slow economic growth.
“With the P12 trillion debt overhang, the first best strategic way out of the national problem is focus the limited budget on agriculture (to contain inflation) and social services (safety nets) and get growth (GDP) from foreign investments,” the re-elected lawmaker of the 2nd district of Albay said, adding that he said the same thing during his conversation with Vice President Leni Robredo on Wednesday.
Robredo would have been the best leader for the country at this time since foreign investors trust her, but Marcos was given a mandate with highest votes in half a century of presidential contests, Salceda said.
On Tuesday, May 10, stock prices slumped with partial, unofficial election tallies pointing to a Ferdinand Marcos Jr. presidency, with media stocks among the biggest losers, perhaps a reflection on the the presumptive president’s dramatic efforts to shun the media during his campaign.
But the lawmaker said Marcos’ huge mandate “can also be mobilized for smart policies to offset foreign investors’ concerns about him and his father’s rule.”
Addressing viral social media posts claiming rice would go down to P20 per kilo under a Marcos presidency, Salceda said that could only happen if the country imports rice from Vietnam without imposing taxes. That, he pointed out, would kill 3.4 million Filipino rice farmers. – Rappler.com
There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.