Miyerkules, Pebrero 17, 2016

Culprit why Filipinos are Poor: Population Explosion

By Mortz C. Ortigoza

Economic experts said the Philippines lags with South East Asian neighbours Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, and Singapore in terms of foreign direct investment (FDI).
Filipinos breed like rabbits. PHOTO CREDIT: Rappler.com
To cite data from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), it says our country in 2014 got U.S$ 6.2 billion foreign direct investment (FDI) only while FDI poured generously at the tune of $ 9.2 billion in Vietnam, $ 22.6 billion in Indonesia, $12.6 Thailand, and S67.5 billion in Singapore in the same year.

Philippines snared more foreign monies in South  East Asia
Since we talk here about foreign monies that benefit our people, the Philippine was not a sissy, as many economics expert painted, on snaring FDI.
 We are Top 2 after Singapore in the burgeoning South East Asian (SEA) economic alliance in getting foreign monies in and outside the Philippines.
Our country is a recipient of a staggering U.S $34.60 billion if we include the U.S $28.40 billion (World Bank) remittances sent by the millions of overseas foreign workers (OFWs), the ballyhooed economic saving grace of the country, in 2014.
So if Vietnam and Indonesia (second and third after the Philippines in the SEA region that send workers overseas) have U.S$21.20 billon and U.S$ 31.15 billion, respectively if we integrate the data from UNCTAD and the remittances list from the World Bank, the Philippines becomes No. 2 after Singapore by ranking who got the most foreign monies.
Despite being the Top 2, probably the first time you read from a columnist, why we are still poor versus Thailand and Singapore despite the $34.60 billion that entered the country and the 6.7 percent Gross Domestic Product last year – dubbed as one of the fastest economic growth engines in the world?

Pathetic Per Capita Income and 9.1 million unemployed
With a per capita income (PCI) of U.S $2,872.5 (World Bank, 2011-2014) versus Thailand and Singapore’s PCI of $5,977.4 and $ 56,284.6,respectively,  we have 6.8 percent unemployment rate or 4, 228,852 unemployed in a labor force of 62, 189,000 according to the Philippine Statistics Office.
But the December 8, 2015 survey of the Social Weather Station said that 9.1 million Filipinos were unemployed.
PCI, by the way, is the mean money income received in the past 12 months computed for every man, woman, and child in a geographic area. It is derived by dividing the total income of all people 15 years old and over in a geographic area by the total population in that area.
This massive number of jobless, aggravated this year by the dropped of the prices of oil in the Middle East, and the runaway population explosion, where ironically the poor bear more children than the moneyed, would aggravate the economic stocks of the poor in the Philippines.
Aggressively Promote Population Control
To arrest the exploding demography, so there would be less poor Filipinos who will compete with the jobs brought by FDI, our growing manufacturing base, the jobs generated because of the remittances of the OFWs, and the business outsourcing firms, the government should aggressively promote population control by giving contraceptives to the people.
But if these dole-outs of condoms, pills, and others will smack head on with the legalities as provided by the Reproductive Health Law, the private sectors through foundations, can play a role on the promotion (just like Trust Condom promoted then on TV as advertisement) or their free distribution.

Let’s emulate Thailand how to reduce our population

Let us compare the Philippines to Thailand that economically dusted off us significantly, say, in terms of PCI where each of them got $5,977.4 a year while each Filipinos had $2,872.5 PCI a year in 2011-2014 World Bank’s records.
Remember in 1975 Thailand and the Philippines had roughly the same population, a high population growth rate, a high fertility rate, and the same number of the population living under poverty line.
But because the Thai government, just like the Marcos Administration in the 1970s, aggressively promote family controls for 35 years after 1975, the following results, according to Dr. Nibhon Debavalya, Thailand’s leading population expert, ensued:
·        Thailand was able to radically reduce its population growth rate to 0.6 percent while the Philippines inched down to 2.04 percent in the period 1970-2010.
·        During the period 1970-2008, Thailand’s GDP per capita grew by 4.4 percent, while the Philippines’ grew by 1.4 percent.
·        By 2008, Thailand’s total GDP was $273 billion while the Philippines’ was $167 billion. (Note: In 2014, Thailand and Philippines’ GDP were $437, 344,000,000 and $ 278,260, 000,000 , respectively (World Bank)
·        By 2010, there were 93.6 million Filipinos, or over 20 million more than the 68.1 million Thais. This gap of 25.5 million is the demographic advantage enjoyed by Thailand – one that has made a vast difference in the economic performance and the quality of life of the people in the two countries.
·        By 2008, owing partly to its demographic performance, Thailand’s GDP per capita was $4,043 or more than twice that of the Philippines, which stood at $1,847.
·        By 2010, only 9.6 percent of Thais lived under the national poverty line while 26.4 percent of Filipinos did.

How can we uplift the standard of living of the Filipinos
If we quantify these data between Thailand, that encourages 100 percent foreign investment, and the Philippines, that encourages 40 percent foreign ownership as mandated by her Constitution, then it is no longer debatable that the Thais have better standard of living by just citing both countries’ PCI.
So how can we rev up our lethargic share of the PCI?
My answer: Fight population explosion, change the foreign economic equity on the corporate ownership from 40 percent to 100 percent just like what  Vietnam and Singapore had done, diversify OFWs’ deployment overseas as the dropped of the prices of oil in many states become an economic menace, and buttress the growth of our local industries like manufacturing and business outsourcing like call centres and medical transcriptionists.
On how to fight population explosion, here’s Debavalya.
“A final decisive factor was the national government’s durable commitment to a comprehensive program that systematically provided information and contraceptives, especially to the poor and in rural areas”.
He said that while non government organizations, such as Meechai’s Population and Community Development Association, were important in educating rural Thais on the different methods of family planning, it was the government that provided access to contraceptives in the grassroots.
Remember, our country despite our $34.60 billion foreign monies took in 2014 or the crap of being Economic Top 2 on that year would be nothing if we do not arrest our runaway population explosion – the real culprit why we have massive unemployment rate and limping poverty as a result of the policies implemented by this misdirected and religion-scared government.

(You can read my selected columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at totomortz@yahoo.com) 

1 komento:

  1. "In a statement, NEDA Undersecretary for Planning and Policy Rosemarie Edillon said that strategies to attain the demographic dividend have already been spelled out in the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2017-2022.

    These include the “full and aggressive implementation of existing laws and policies,” such as the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act, the Magna Carta of Women, the National Population Policy and the carrying out of a sustained universal health care program.

    “Maximizing the demographic dividend will ensure that the economy will expand even faster beyond the country’s medium-term plan and thus achieve the AmBisyon Natin 2040,” Edillon said.

    PDP 2017-2022 is the blueprint for the country’s development under the Duterte administration. It is the first of four medium-term plans designed to realize Ambisyon Natin 2040, the collective vision of Filipinos over the next 25 years.

    Comparing the Philippines and Thailand, Edillon said “both had roughly similar growth rates back in 1975.”

    Thailand, however, was able to curb its population level and grew at an average of 1.6 percent only.

    The Philippines, on the other hand, increased at an average of 2.4 percent in the 1990s and reached a population of 76 million.

    This year, Philippine population soared to 105 million.

    “What would have happened had the Philippines followed the population path of Thailand between 1975 and 2000?” Edillon asked.

    Citing a study done by University of the Philippines’ School of Statistics dean Dennis Mapa, Edillon maintained that the Philippines “would have been an upper middle-income country had it followed Thailand’s population path.”

    “There will be a cumulative increase of about 22 percent on the average income per person in the year 2000,” she said, adding that this means an average income of about $5,000 per person.

    Edillon added that it is “not merely the population per se that the government must work on but (also) its quality.” (FROM: PopCom worried over rising population of the elderly
    By Sheila Crisostomo (The Philippine Star) | Updated November 19, 2017 )