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PBBM bent on transforming economy, making food affordable to avert future crises

MANILA -- President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Tuesday, September 13, said his administration is geared towards economic transformation to shield the country from future crises in the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic.

In an interview with TV host and actress Toni Gonzaga aired on ALLTV, Marcos expressed optimism about the administration’s success in any endeavor, noting, however, that it must come up with new ideas and be creative.

“That’s why in my view, I talk about transforming our economy, not recovery. Because I don’t want to recover the economy to what it was in 2019. I want to transform the economy to be ready for the shocks, the difficulties that we will face from 2022,” he told Gonzaga.

The President particularly mentioned making food affordable for everybody.

It is the administration’s priority to ensure food security, he said, adding that the government has to reorganize the entire agricultural production value chain system over the years.

Asked about his aspiration to reduce the price of rice to P20 per kilo, the President said it would take time to achieve it.

“There’s a way to do it but it will take a while. We have to return NFA to its old function, not so much importation but really the buying,” he said.

“And then even — even actually now we can already do it but it’s a little short-term. We sell the buffer stock that they have in NFA. We can sell it at 20 pesos. But that’s not really realistic. We have to bring the actual price down.”

With the right government interventions, such as improving the value chain and securing some savings, as well as a favorable world market condition, attaining a P20 per kilo of rice would be possible, he said.

Speaking of the economy, the President acknowledged the country’s high inflation rate, which affected everything.

“We’ve actually done, in terms of monetary policy, we’ve done all right in the Philippines. Ang problema is something that’s called imported — imported inflation,” Marcos said.

“Because the inflation that was suffered by whatever project — sabihin bibili tayo fertilizer, doon sa pinanggalingan niya, tumaas ang presyo ng natural gas, tumaas ang presyo ng ammonia, all of the elements that go into it.”

This is the current reality given the interconnection among countries, he said, adding that one nation cannot deal or trade anymore without talking to other countries. (PND) 

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Maria Viktoria Viado

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Visayas Ave., Diliman, Quezon City 

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