INFRA SPENDING BOOSTED
Investing in infrastructure is a key component of the government due to its multiplier effect on the economy.
This is the "bounce-back " strategy of the Duterte administration, according to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez during a webinar hosted by the Iloilo Business Club via Zoom.
“We have a future to win,” Dominguez said, citing the need to revive the economy ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“As we ensure financing support for our enterprises, our bounce-back strategy centers on sustaining the ‘Build, Build, Build’ program. Investing in sound infrastructure has the largest multiplier effect in the economy. It creates jobs, fires up consumption, and spurs productive activity,” he said.
He cited the infrastructure developments in the West Visayan province of Iloilo to underscore the commitment of President Duterte to forge ahead with his signature. project “Build, Build, Build” despite the global coronavirus pandemic.
Dominguez said that even before the health crisis triggered by the global spread of the lethal COVID-19, Visayas has already become a major growth center and contributor to the overall economy as a result of the rapid growth of various sectors in the region resulting from massive state investments in infrastructure.
Among the notable infrastructure investments in Iloilo are the expansion projects in the Port of Estancia and the Iloilo Commercial Port Complex that were inaugurated by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) in June this year, Dominguez said. These strategic projects will address, he said, the local and foreign shipping demands in the country and boost regional inter-connectivity. Dominguez pointed out that as the nation continues to fight COVID-19, it also has to rebuild the economy not just to return the country to the path of sustained and high growth but also as a condition to ensure public health.
“We cannot fight a pandemic with a weak economy; nor can we restore economic vigor without solving the public health crisis. The health of our people and the strength of our economy are mutually reinforcing,” Dominguez said.
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