Growth forecast for PHL economy remains at 6.4%: World Bank

admin   •   October 5, 2016   •   2899

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The World Bank retains its economic growth forecast for the Philippines.

The multilateral lending institution expects the Philippine economy to grow at 6.4 percent this 2016 and at 6.2 percent in the next two years, with the services sector as the key growth driver of the economy.

The World Bank also stresses that the Philippine economy may surpass the current forecast if the government can further ramp up spending on infrastructure as planned.

In the same World Bank report, the lending institution noted that the number of Filipinos in extreme poverty may significantly decline if the economic growth is sustained, and spending on health, education, and social protection expands. — UNTV News & Rescue

Inflation rate peaks at 3.5% in December 2020 due to high food prices

Aileen Cerrudo   •   January 5, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The inflation rate in December 2020 peaked at 3.5% due to the high prices of pork, vegetables, and other food products.

This is higher compared to the 3.3% inflation rate recorded in November and the highest inflation rate recorded in the country since March 2019.

Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) Usec. Dr. Dennis Mapa said aside from the food products, an increase in the transportation fares and alcoholic beverages also contributed to the December 2020 rate.

“This would be attributed to the demand dahil ginagamit talaga sa pagluluto (it is used for cooking) and, of course, the celebration particularly last Christmas and the New Year pushed the demand to increase and also we have concerns related to the supply,” he said.

Meanwhile, the PSA expects lower prices of goods this January. -AAC (with reports from Asher Cadapan Jr.)

PH climbs to 50th spot among 131 economies in Global Innovation Index 2020

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 4, 2020

The Philippines has climbed up the rankings of the Global Innovation Index (GII) 2020, moving up to the 50th spot out of 131 countries.

Rising four notches from its 54th rank in 2019, the Philippines’ standing has been improving for two consecutive years. The Global Innovation Index ranks the innovation capabilities of countries across the globe.

According to the GII 2020 report, the Philippines stood out in the areas of innovation in the business sector as well as the innovative outcomes produced by its investments.

“The report disclosed that the country performed beyond expectation as it grabbed rank 6th in Productivity growth, rank 7th in Firms offering formal training, and rank 8th globally in the area of Utility models by origin,” the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) said in a statement.

Along with India, Vietnam, and China, the Philippines has made the most significant progress in the global ranking. -AAC

PHL, World Bank ink $370-M loan deal for titling of lands to CARP beneficiaries

Robie de Guzman   •   July 21, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine government has signed a $370-million loan agreement with the World Bank for a project that aims to speed up the process of the country’s program to redistribute land to farmer-beneficiaries, the Department of Finance (DOF) said.

In a statement issued on Monday, the DOF said the loan will be used to expedite the splitting of about 1.4 million hectares of land covered by the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) and provide individual titles to these parcelized lots to some 750,000 farmer-beneficiaries.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III and Mr. Achim Fock, who was then the World Bank’s Acting Country Director for Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines, and Thailand, signed the loan agreement last July 14, the department said.

Dominguez said the project called Support to Parcelization of Lands for Individual Titling (SPLIT) of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) will improve the bankability of farmers and enable them to access credit and government assistance.

“It will support our economic recovery program by intensifying assistance to farmers and making agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) more resilient to the economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic,” Dominguez said.

Under the project, the collective certificate of land ownership awards (CCLOAs) will be divided into individual titles for some 750,000 ARBs to help fulfill the completion of the decades-old CARP.

The government has redistributed about 4.8 million hectares of land to some 2.8 million ARBs under the agrarian reform program, but only 53 percent were in the form of individual land titles.

The remaining 47 percent or about 2.5 million hectares are CCLOA titles that were issued to groups of ARBs in the 1990s as a temporary measure to fast-track the distribution of land to farmer-beneficiaries, the DOF said.

“Through the project, ARBs will be provided security of tenure by way of issuance of individual titles. If ARBs or members of their family fall ill, clear and valid documentation of their property will allow them to mortgage their land, sell, or pass it on to their family members through inheritance,” it added.

The total cost of the SPLIT Project is US$473.56 million, of which US$370 million will be funded by the World Bank, while the government will provide the counterpart financing for the balance of US$103.56 Million.

The loan deal carries a 29-year maturity period, inclusive of a grace period of 10-and-a-half years, the DOF said.

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