On Monday, President Benigno Simeon Aquino III delivered his third State of the Nation Address (SONA), a yearly tradition in which the President reports about the status of the Philippines.
He delivered the lists of his economic and political achievements for the last two years, but what he said for me was not enough to impress not just for me but also for the millions of poor Filipinos who never tasted the fruits of relative economic and political stability that he maintained from the efforts of his predecessor, former President and not Pampanga Representative, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, on which he despised personally (for me).
During his one-and-a-half-hour speech, he lambasted his predecessor, Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo for the third time before the Congress while never he realized that the relative (although not enough) economic stability was formulated by Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.
He bragged in front of millions of Filipino people through the cameras facing on him that the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) brought more job opportunities for the skilled people on which I never disputed, however the credit of that accomplishment shall not be bragged by any single person not even President Noynoy nor his predecessor as for the last 12 years, American and European companies outsourced some of their low-paying service jobs to the developing countries like the Philippines. Also the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) is not enough to keep the Philippine economy afloat nor to generate more employment opportunities for the millions of Filipinos as these kind of jobs needs enough English proficiency to be hired as a BPO worker on which majority of the Filipinos cannot achieve that kind of proficiency. Also, it is not a capital-intensive investment unlike mining, manufacturing, or tourism.
He trumpeted the latest 6.4% 2012 1st quarter GDP annual growth over the same quarter of last year as his achievements. Actually, our economic growth never really made a good economic multiplying effects to the majority people as significant of that economic growth was a result of our economy’s dependence to our millions of Filipino workers abroad and the money they remitted never funneled for future investment purposes but instead, that money went for consumption purposes which only created a short-term economic stimulus at the expense of long-term economic growth sustainability.
He used the recent outstanding performance of the Philippine Stock Exchange Index (PSEi) as a proof of the effectiveness of his economic and investment policies. He never realized that the recent inflation of the Philippine Stock Exchange was a result of massive “hot money” inflows flowing to our economy by massive monetary quantitative easing done by the Federal Reserve of the United States to stimulate the American economy and the excess dollars went to the developing country like the Philippines as foreign investors find economically stable countries to deposit their investment portfolios for short-term purposes and that “hot money” inflows never really converted into a real direct invest for our further economic upgrades as most foreign investors are reluctant to invent in our country in long-term basis due to our constitutional barriers on foreign equity ownership of businesses like the 60/40 equity restrictions against foreign investment.
Before I conclude my critique, I would like to appeal to our President Benigno Simeon Cojuangco Aquino to further reform our economic and political system through revising our flawed and outdated 1987 Constitution like scrapping the protectionist economic provisions once and for all and allow 100% foreign equity ownership of business at all economic sectors as much as possible; shifting from unitary to federal form of government where the grip of the national capital on economic, cultural, educational, and health affairs of provinces and instead let the provinces to decide their economic, political, and social development under the umbrella of our country; and finally adopt the real parliamentary system derived from Britain in order to give the best minds of our country to become leaders and never let undeserving people to become our leaders in order to achieve economic and political stability. Thank you.