Biz leaders gather in Davao for consultation on Duterte’s socioeconomic agenda

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 19 June) – Some 300 business leaders from all over the country are expected to gather here for a two-day consultative meeting on President-elect Rodrigo Duterte’s 10-point socio-economic agenda to promote inclusive growth.

Dubbed “Sulong Pilipinas: Hakbang Tungo sa Kaunlaran,” the two-day event, led by incoming Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez in partnership with the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Mindanao Business Council, will be held at the SMX Convention Center Davao on June 20 to 21.

“Sulong” is envisioned to be the first of a yearly series in the next six years of the Duterte administration.

Finance Secretary-designate Carlos Dominguez (center) with incoming Local Goverments Secretary Michael Sueno (L) and incoming Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol. MindaNews photo by Carolyn O. Arguillas Finance Secretary-designate Carlos Dominguez (center) , shown here with  incoming Local Goverments Secretary Michael Sueno (L) and incoming Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol ( R ) will present the 10-point socio-economic agenda during the two-day consultative meeting in Davao City with business leaders  from all over the country.  MindaNews photo by Carolyn O. Arguillas

“This effort is not a stand-alone undertaking. It is anchored on the long-term Filipino 2040 vision and the next medium-term Philippine Development Planning cycle, both led by NEDA (National Economic Development Authority)” press briefer said.

The consultative meeting, it added, will be to enlist help from the private sector to ensure “widespread participation of key stakeholders in formulating plans and programs” and to “generate recommendations from the business community for the incoming Duterte administration” on the 10-point socioeconomic agenda.

Day 1 will open with incoming National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) director general Ernesto Pernia giving an economic situationer while Dominguez will be presenting the 10-point socio-economic agenda and how it will address major challenges in inclusive growth.

Results of the consultative meeting will be presented to Duterte in the afternoon of the second day.

The 10-point socioeconomic agenda:

  1.     Continue and maintain current macroeconomic policies, including fiscal, monetary, and trade policies.
  2.     Institute progressive tax reform and more effective tax collection, indexing taxes to inflation. A tax reform package will be submitted to Congress by September 2016.
  3.     Increase competitiveness and the ease of doing business. This effort will draw upon successful models used to attract business to local cities, and pursue the relaxation of the Constitutional restrictions on foreign ownership, except as regards land ownership, in order to attract foreign direct investment.
  4.     Accelerate annual infrastructure spending to account for 5% of GDP, with Public-Private Partnerships playing a key role.
  5.     Promote rural and value chain development toward increasing agricultural and rural enterprise productivity and rural tourism.
  6.     Ensure security of land tenure to encourage investments, and address bottlenecks in land management and titling agencies.
  7.     Invest in human capital development, including health and education systems, and match skills and training to meet the demand of businesses and the private sector.
  8.     Promote science, technology, and the creative arts to enhance innovation and creative capacity towards self-sustaining, inclusive development.
  9.     Improve social protection programs, including the government’s Conditional Cash Transfer program, to protect the poor against instability and economic shocks.
  10. Strengthen implementation of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Law to enable especially poor couples to make informed choices on financial and family planning. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)