MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines is set to showcase the country’s steady economic growth amid a low inflation environment as the sovereign debt crisis continued to batter countries in Europe and as the US continued to face economic uncertainties during the four-day Asian Development Bank (ADB) conference next month.
During the 45th Annual Meeting of the ADB Board of Governors from May 2 to May 5, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. said the Philippines would share knowledge on a bilateral as well as multilateral basis the positive effects of the reforms undertaken by the country over the years that translated to sustained economic growth.
“For us, we’ll also be able to demonstrate the positive effects of the reforms that we have implemented over the years and how these have helped bring our economy to growth. And also show sustained growth with low inflation,” he said.
The country’s gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by 3.7 percent last year amid the debt crisis in Europe and the fragile economic growth in advanced economies led by the US.
Last year’s GDP expansion was lower than the 7.6-percent growth booked in 2010 due to weak global growth and cautious spending by the Aquino administration.
On the other hand, the country’s inflation averaged 4.8 percent or well within the target of three percent to five percent.
The Cabinet-level Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) sees the country’s GDP expanding between five percent and six percent this year while the BSP expects inflation to average between three percent and five percent.
The four-day meet would be highlighted by a Governors’ Seminar that would focus on Asia’s response to the global economic crisis.
Likewise, panel discussions would also be conducted to include new models for green growth in the region; how to protect vulnerable cities; how to deliver financial services to the world’s poor; and how to feed the world in an age of growing demand for food, feed and fuel.
Tetangco told reporters that the meeting would be an opportunity for ADB members to discuss what could be done to further intensify regional and international cooperation particularly given the challenges that are being confronted now as a result of what is happening in Europe and the rest of the world.
“In this environment, of course the emerging market economies have continued to provide the push for global growth. Emerging markets have been the driver of global growth and it is important that the emerging markets also in gatherings like this increase their participation and their role given their increase in importance in the global economy,” he added.
The BSP governor said discussions about Europe and the challenges being faced by ADB members would also be conducted.
Finance ministers and central bank governors, representatives from international organizations, private sector, civil society, and global media are expected to attend the four-day conference. - By Lawrence Agcaoili