|02 Feb 2016|
|Palace pleased with country’s higher position in Economic Freedom Index|
| Malacañang has welcomed the results of the 2016 Economic Freedom Index that showed a big improvement in the Philippines’ world ranking.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said the country jumped to 70th place from 76th place last year.
“We welcome the results of the 2016 Index of Economic Freedom, which shows the Philippines jumping from 76th place last year to 70th place, having scored 63.1 out of a possible 100 points—up from 62.2 in the previous index. This is the highest score our country has received since the index began in 1995. In recent years, the Philippines has steadily improved its score, gaining a total of 6 points since 2012,” Secretary Lacierda said.
“According to the latest results, our country is the 14th freest among the 42 countries surveyed in the Asia-Pacific region,” he added.
He cited the country’s management of public finance and progress in improving the entrepreneurial environment, including government efforts to develop a more vibrant private sector, as among the successes lauded in the report.
Lacierda further said that the index noted the steady growth of the Philippine economy over the past five years, as well as the gradual modernization of the financial sector.
In terms of regulatory efficiency, he said, the report observed that the time and cost of dealing with licensing requirements have notably improved.
“These results once again affirm our belief that good governance is good economics. Apart from serving as a strong testament to the effectiveness of reforms, this positive news clearly shows how the Philippines has been progressing under the Aquino administration, and points toward even greater development—so long as we continue along the Straight Path,” the Palace official said.
Lacierda said the country’s future is in the hands of those whom the Filipino people would choose in the May elections.
“During the next elections, it will be up to our Bosses to chart the country’s future—whether we will gainfully sustain this upward trajectory, or either return to the regressive ways of the past or head toward an uncertain future,” said Lacierda. PND (jm)
|President Aquino declares February 3 a special holiday in Bulacan and the City of Cabanatuan|
|President Benigno S. Aquino III has declared February 3 (Wednesday) a special non-working day in the province of Bulacan and the city of Cabanatuan in Nueva Ecija province.
President Aquino issued Proclamation No. 1204, which declares February 3 a special holiday in Bulacan to celebrate the birth anniversary of Blas Ople.
“Blas F. Ople, who served as Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Senate President and Secretary of Labor, devoted decades of his life to selfless and dedicated service to our country and our people,” the proclamation stated, adding that the “son of Bulacan is a model citizen and public officer to the Filipino people, especially to the Bulakenyos”.
President Aquino also issued Proclamation No. 1205 declaring February 3 a special non-working day in Cabanatuan City in commemoration of its 66th Foundation Anniversary.
“It is but fitting and proper that the people of the City of Cabanatuan, be given full opportunity to celebrate and participate in the occasion with appropriate ceremonies,” the proclamation stated.
The proclamations were signed last January 28. PND (co)
|President Aquino praises commitment of Department of Social Welfare and Development employees, volunteers|
|President Benigno S. Aquino III praised the dedication of the Department of Social Welfare and Development’s (DSWD) officials, employees and volunteers during the agency’s 65th anniversary celebration in Malacañang Palace on Tuesday.The President said their continued commitment to serve would inspire the future generation.
“Ang bawat butil ng malasakit ninyo sa inyong kapwa Pilipino sa kasalukuyan, paglaon, ay magbubunga ng mas malaki pang pagbabago. Lahat ng tulong ninyo sa mga benepisyaryo ngayon, mamanahin ng mga susunod pang henerasyon. Ang kalayaan mula sa gutom; kalayaan mula sa kawalan ng edukasyon at serbisyong pangkalusugan; kalayaang mangarap at panghawakan ang sariling tadhana—lahat ng mga ito, bitbit nila, at ng mga susunod pa sa kanila. Talaga pong kayo ang gumagawa ng pagbabago,” said the President, who also announced that the anniversary bonus for DSWD employees has already been signed.
President Aquino expressed confidence that the DSWD employees would bravely face any challenge that lies ahead.
“Sa totoo lang, napakahirap ikahon sa iisang linya ang kabuuang ambag ninyong mga social workers sa ating bayan. Pero kung papansinin natin ang simpleng logo ng DSWD, marahil, mas madali nating mauunawaan ang diwa ng inyong serbisyo. Mayroong mga kamay na tangan ang isang puso, na sumisimbulo sa bukas-palad ninyong pag-aalay ng sarili para sa kapwa. Tunay ngang kayo ang mukha ng malasakit ng ating gobyerno. Ang hiling ko na nga lang po: Sa harap ng mga darating pang pagsubok, nawa’y di kayo panghinaan ng loob, bagkus, magsilbing sandigan ng lakas ng ating mga Boss,” he said.
“Tiwala naman ako: Ipaglalaban ninyo ang ating maganda nang nasimulan. Pagbaba ko sa puwesto, buo ang loob kong itutuloy ninyo ang pagtahak sa landas tungo sa pangarap nating kaginhawaan para sa Pilipinas at sa sambayanang Pilipino.”
He said the DSWD has enough funds to improve its services, especially when natural disasters strike.
“Ngayon po, kitang-kita na ang pagbabago sa inyong ahensiya. May sapat na tayong pondo, kaya’t di na kailangan ng malawakang panawagan para sa mga donasyon. Kapag sinabing DSWD, ang agad nang maiisip: handang-handa at alisto. Kababalita pa lang na may paparating na bagyo, automatic na ang prepositioning ng ayuda. Nariyan ang buong ahensiya, kumpleto ang datos, para makapaghanda nang tama at maayos,” said the Chief Executive, who also lauded the leadership of Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman.
He noted that more households have benefitted from the increase of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) budget from P10 billion in 2010 to P62 billion in 2015.
“Ang dinatnan nating bilang ng benepisyaryo, mula 787,000 kabahayan, ngayon ay nasa 4.4 milyon na. Para sa taong ito, itinaas pa natin ang budget nito sa P62.7 bilyon, para sa target nating 4.6 milyong kabahayang benepisyaryo,” he said.
President Aquino also cited the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive Integrated Delivery of Social Service (KALAHI-CIDSS), which is a community-driven development program.
“Ang KALAHI-CIDSS project naman, pinatibay din natin. Dito, ang mga maralitang komunidad ang sinasanay para mag-isip, magpatupad, at mangasiwa sa mga lokal na proyektong sila rin mismo ang tumukoy. Halimbawa sa mga ito: kalsada, patubig, paaralan, barangay health stations, at mga pasilidad pansaka. Mula Hulyo 2010 hanggang Disyembre 2015, umabot na sa 16,282 na proyekto ang nakumpleto natin, na direktang nakatulong naman sa tinatayang 3.9 milyong kabahayang benepisyaryo. Dulo po nito: Di lang natin natugunan ang mga agarang pangangailangan ng ating mga Boss, binibigyan din natin sila ng kakayahang maitaguyod ang mas magandang kinabukasan,” said the President. PND (jm)
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