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In your opinion, how is the Philippines handling the global economic crisis thus far?

Pedro Alagano Sr., Vigan City: So far, so good. Let’s pray that PGMA and her economic team, with our moral support, can keep the ship afloat and veer away from the economic storm.  

Rene Poder, Manila: PGMA’s regime has very little to do with the minimal impact on our economy. Their self-serving bows deserve a swift backside kick.  

GMA and her team are doing well

M. Sunico, Caloocan City: GMA and her Secretaries have done quite well at managing our economy. If not for the exposure of our electronics industries, we would have been more insulated. Overseas workers, especially those prematurely laid off due to the shrinking market being catered to by their Taiwanese employers  should not burden the government with demands for reimbursements of their deployment expenses. We ought to look at ourselves more to assist the government rather than expecting it to do everything for us.  

C.B. Manalastas, Manila: In fairness to our economic managers, so far, they have done a good job in countering our country’s economic problems in spite of the global crisis.  

Luisito Vallo, Pangasinan: RP is a consumer-based economy so it isn’t affected much by the crisis; it’s doing well compared to others, thanks to the programs of the government to ease the impact on its people.  

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Nick Ocampo, Angeles City: As of this time, our economic status is good. NEDA has introduced economic policies to decrease poverty and unemployment.  

Eddie Yap, Kabankalan City: It is heartening to note that the Philippine government is leaving no stone unturned in finding ways to mitigate the economic crisis hounding the country. Remember, this problem is global in scope and President GMA must be commended by doing the best that she can sans fanfare and without getting herself distracted by detractors who find nothing right in what she does.  

Dino Monzon, Caloocan City: I think the country’s coping as best as it can, but we must see the government take decisive action as Pres. Obama did with AIG to prove that it means business. 

Ruel Bautista, Laguna: We can’t deny that the sound fundamental economic programs set by PGMA helped lessen the impact of the global economic crisis on us.  

Reactive more than proactive

Alexander Raquepo, Ilocos Sur: Again, I say, our government (with all the bright minds in it) tends to be more reactive than proactive. I would like see better approaches and actions to mitigate the effects of our own Philippine economic crisis.  

Gerii Calupitan, Muntinlupa City: As usual, Pinoys are handling the global economic crisis in a way my ex-boss Jim Sarthou Jr. described as, “What you don’t know won’t hurt you, until it does!” We always act on the 11th hour. Kapag may lumubog na barko, naaksidenteng bus o tren, bumagsak na eroplano, etc., saka pa lang kikilos!  

Germi Sison, Cabanatuan City: The way the Philippines is coping with the global economic crisis is not proactive. Public service is made to save on expenses (limited gasoline supply to ambulances and ammunition to soldiers and policemen) and retrenched workers are encouraged to engage in business even with no entrepreneurship skills and capital. Overseas employment is encouraged, but workers are not properly protected against abusive employers abroad. Our scientists and inventors are recognized, but are not assisted in pursuing new findings and inventions, which, if exploited, could turn our balance of trade in our favor. Idle lands are aplenty, but are not put to use for production, income generation, cleanliness and beautification. Tourism is being promoted but peace and order and good services are neglected. In short, our country attends to problems when they arise, but has no formula to prevent them from coming.  

Enid Abracia, Metro Manila: Not very well, I’m afraid. More often than not, our government tends to be more reactive than proactive. Our country has experienced an economic crunch twice in around 10 years, but so far, react lang tayo ng react, salag lang ng salag. We haven’t come up yet with a more sustainable solution to our problems. There’s a saying, “Give man a fish and he’ll have food for a day. But teach man to fish and he’ll have food for a lifetime.” Don’t you think applying the concept behind this noble adage is a more proactive approach than giving doleouts? Just asking.  

OFW remittances and VAT keep us afloat

Richard Decena, Quezon City: I’m not an economist, but I think it’s the foreign remittances of overseas Filipinos and the value added tax that help keep the country afloat.  

Daniel Abellera, California: The Philippines is dependent on overseas employment to boost its economy. I think the Philippine government should create more jobs for its people on all fronts for its economic gain. In the near future, jobs overseas will start to decrease, the population will grow, and soon, countries will decrease their demand for foreign workers.  

Government efforts are lacking

Rey Ibalan, Antipolo City: The global economic crisis has sent powerful nations reeling and we are badly affected. Government efforts are sorely lacking.   

Norman Villamayor, Mandaluyong City: Enjoining Filipinos to tap into their entrepreneurial inclinations has partly addressed some of the effects of the global economic crisis. However, government red tape and lack of apt support have made these efforts frustrating for some individuals. There should be a symbiotic partnership here to ensure a win-win situation for both parties.  

Leonard Villa, Batac City: On a scale of one to 10, I’d give the Arroyo government a five for its half-hearted reaction to the global economic crisis. We have yet to see tangible government action.  

Rex Earlou Calmerin, Iligan City :Without the help of TESDA, the Philippine government will become helpless and eventually, like Iceland, our country will have to declare bankruptcy.  

We can survive any crisis

Johann Lucas, Quezon :The Philippines is in a good position. Filipinos are resilient, not because of the economy itself, but because of our attitude when it comes to dealing with crises.  

Mary Jane Tomon, Quezon City: I believe that the government is doing what it can to overcome the crisis, but it should show sincerity in seeing us through this. However, we should also do our part to survive and not just depend on the government for our survival. I know that Filipinos are practical in so many ways, and this will help us.  

Voz Butuyan, Pangasinan :We will survive and thrive because the Philippines is blessed with talented people and rich natural resources.  

Leandro Tolentino, Batangas City :This crisis is nothing new to our country and I think the global economic crisis had been confronted by everyone with vigor and a positive outlook.  

Lydia Reyes, Bataan: I guess we’re surviving. No big deal na ang global economic crisis na ito for some because matiisin naman at resourceful si Juan dela Cruz.  

Rose Leobrera, Manila: Pinoys are flexible, they can strike anywhere just to be able to surpass the hard times. Pinatibay na tayo ng katakut-takot na hirap and so here we are lumalaban.  

Ed Alawi, Davao City: Global Pinoys laid off in some country find jobs in other countries. RP exports are down, yet relatively, we are still better off and can survive.  

Jayson Biadog, Mandaluyong City: Some become tougher during a global crisis, but most suffer because their problem is bigger than the solutions at hand. We are supposedly bigger than our problems, always.  

The government is doing its best

Armando Tavera, Las Piñas City: The government is doing the best that it could. This is a global problem and everybody knows that times are getting harder and more difficult.  

Benjamin Nillo, Las Piñas City: The Philippines’ handling of the global economic crisis is very satisfactory compared to our Third World counterparts.  

Ella Arenas, Pangasinan: The way I see it, the government is handling the crisis well. It’s doing what should be done, but I hope it could do more.  

Digoy Coro, Batangas City: The government is trying its best to help, extend more direct assistance to the poor, and pursue Sec. Recto’s proposal of unemployment assistance to those who lose their jobs.  

C.F. Fundales, Bulacan: The renewed development thrust on tourism and non-traditional foreign markets would compensate for the slow recovery in traditional forex sources. We’re coping.  

Corruption must be dealt with

Patrick Miranda, Marikina City: To make the efforts of the government credible, it should make sure that corruption is dealt with accordingly.

Expecting better days ahead

Mark Capistrano, Parañaque City: Excellent. We already reached rock bottom last month and there’s no way but up. Month to date, I’ve already earned 27 per cent in my stock portfolio.  

J-Dub Wenceslao, Imus, Cavite: Much as I want to be conservative in my words about how the Philippines is handling the GEC, consider the 7.7 percent jobless rate as of January 2009. About 275, 000 people have lost their jobs since October. The government says that about a third of the 90 million population is poor, calculated as families of five living on less than the equivalent of $3 a day. I, however, expect better days ahead. Everything will come to pass, even crises such as this.

We are used to crises

Salvacion Tomines, Metro Manila: Considering that our country has been in economic crisis for a long time, this global economic crisis has no effect at all on the Philippines.  

J.R. Mondonedo Jr., Parañaque City: What global crises? Sanay na ang Pinoy sa hirap at gutom. We have been in crisis here since the day we were born.  

Eric Gopilan, Quezon City: Our country is a Third World country. We are used to crises in our daily living. The economic crisis does not affect us much.  

Jose Fabello Jr., Cagayan de Oro City: Like a boxer, the country is absorbing jabs and uppercuts here and there, but still dancing and smiling thus far. However, we should watch out for the KO punch down the months, if it comes at all.  

It helps that our economy wasn’t upgraded

Ignacio Anacta, Metro Manila: According to some newspaper reports, our economy was not totally upgraded; hence, we were not able to do many transactions with our US and European allies. When their economy collapsed, we were not affected that much. However, our electronic parts and other products exported to the First World were hard-hit. The Philippines is now trying to fully develop its tourism industry to generate more local employment and increase the deployment of OFWs. These programs may help us insulate the effect of global economic crisis.  

Robert Young Jr., San Juan: Filipinos are not affected much by the global economic crises, at least not yet. Thanks to the stringent loan requirements of local banks, we are not affected by toxic housing loans. Many Americans who have been evicted from their homes now live in tents. They have much to learn from our illegal settlers who live under bridges, over sewerages, sidewalks and the multipurpose mobile karitons.  

Rodolfo Talledo, Angeles City: We’re doing fine and everyone seems to agree, perennial critics included.They accuse the government of all the high crimes in the book except for the economy.  

So far, so good

Jess Carpena, Laguna: As of the moment, we are doing fairly well compared to the US which is experiencing a recession.  

Rey Onate, Palayan City: The Philippines, in my opinion, is doing fine in handling the global economic crisis. It can be felt in the strong performance of our peso and the optimism of small entrepreneurs. The signs can be felt in the provinces, not in Metro Manila.  

Dave Velasco, Marinduque City: In terms of manpower deployment through the opening of job fairs, I think the Philippines is handling the crisis soundly. That’s fair enough.  

Ryan Pahimulin, Rizal: So far so good. No runaway inflation, massive layoffs, bank panics amd food riots.  

Rico Fabello, Parañaque City: Many members of the American middle class are living in tents due to foreclosures. They’ve left their houses, cars and almost everything they own. I can’t see that happening to our middle class here. The global economic crisis affects the unprepared, the overambitious and the dirt poor.

Gerry del Cano, Muntinlupa City: So far, so good. Let’s hope that we can maintain this and, if possible, further soften the impact of the global economic crisis.  

Foremost on our leaders’ minds

Cris Rivera, Rizal: The way our leaders are working makes me wonder if the global economic crisis has any effect on us. They are all busy, keeping the Cha-cha alive, campaigning prematurely, reacting to Nicole’s recantation, working on Dumlao’s extradition, and many others. I’m really confused.  Eufrocino Linsangan, Isabela

PGMA’s trying to mitigate its impact. DOLE and privately sponsored job fairs certainly help. But we need more portfolio investments for our blue collar workers. Instead of employing measures that could mitigate our woes, however, our Congress’ primary concern is Cha-cha.  

Dennis Acop, Baguio City: The Philippines appears to be doing something about the global economic crisis. Still, I hope it is enough. The fact remains that hundreds of thousands have already lost their jobs. I also hope that the administration is sincere in its efforts to help the citizenry in their dire hour of need. One distracting issue is Cha-cha, which is still being pushed by Malacañang despite its denials. his Cha-cha distraction tends to betray the sincerity of the administration in focusing its attention on the economic problems of the people 100 per cent. How can the administration channel all its energies and resources toward resolving the global crisis for Filipinos when it is busy preserving itself beyond 2010?

Rowena Remiendo, Metro Manila: I think they’re doing something about it, but I also think that they’re more focused on the up-coming elections.  

L.C. Fiel, Quezon City: As far as the government is concerned, the situation is under control. In case you haven’t noticed, the elections are now on our radar, so happy days aren’t far behind.  

Promoting a doleout mentality

Joe Nacilla, Las Piñas City: I do not know if we are lucky or unfortunate to have bright guys in government handling the current global economic crises. When the US announced a stimulus package, these bright guys copied the plan hook, line and sinker, not thinking that our treasury is in the red. What happens now? They want to use the poor people’s money (SSS/GSIS) for doleouts to those who’ve lost their jobs. They forget or intentionally don’t care about the long-suffering retirees who are now dependent on the money they invested. Do these bright guys believe that these retirees are already happy with the net eight per cent (20 percent less VAT) privilege discount?  

Jim Veneracion, Naga City: The government is still breast-beating and giving out rosy press releases. It has a doleout mentality. For the unemployed, papogi lang ito.  

Thumbs up for PGMA

Dianne Aquino, Makati City: It’s a good thing that we have an economist as head of our government. At least she knows the problem by heart, thus we are handling the situation very well.  

Erwin Espinosa, Pangasinan: With an economist-president at the helm of handling the effects of the global economic crisis, we’re better off than most Third World countries.  

Education must improve

I. Calata, Parañaque City: Our country is still not as hard-hit by the global crisis compared to other countries, like the US and European countries. I believe that this indicates that the Philippines is not only weathering the storm, but certainly, the government has done pretty well on this. However, this should not lull us into complacency. We have been remiss on the preparedness of our unemployed to take on available jobs. Even on the domestic front, there are many jobs available, but they remain unfilled because of the lack of qualified people. The government should consider now the upgrading of the education system so that we can produce a labor force that can be deployed anywhere in the world. And yes, let’s improve the proficiency of our graduates in the English language in order for us to be more competitive in the global labor market.  

Renato Taylan, Ilocos Norte: By all indications, our country is coping well with the global economic crisis. Many jobs are available here and abroad but only few workers.  

Media ignores positive reports

Norberto Robles, Taguig: The Philippines is coping with the financial crisis better than most countries. It’s a pity, though, that media glosses over, or even ignores, reports on government efforts. Gabriela gets wider coverage than PGMA.  

Thanks to the private sector

William Gonzaga, Marikina City: We’re still lucky that as a people we’re patiently trying our best to survive within our barest means despite PGMA’s inept and corrupt rule. Kudos to the private sector for feverishly working to keep our economy afloat, no thanks to our government mired in battle for power and pelf among its leaders.  

Views expressed in this section do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of The STAR. The STAR does not knowingly publish false information and may not be held liable for the views of readers exercising their right to free expression. The publication also reserves the right to edit contributions to this section as it sees fit.

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