Duterte 10-pt agenda on right track – ADB exec

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DAVAO CITY: President Rodrigo Duterte’s 10-point agenda to expand the economy is on the right track despite the Philippines’ development challenges, according to an official of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

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Richard Bolt, country director for the Philippines of the Manila-based multilateral lender, said sustained growth is set to continue on the back of strong public and private investment and domestic consumption.

“We are very happy with President Duterte’s 10-point economic agenda and how it is progressing,” Bolt said in his remarks during The Manila Times 5th Business Forum at Marco Polo Hotel in Davao City last Friday.

If successfully implemented, the Duterte administration’s development agenda will sustain high economic growth rates. The Philippine economy grew by 6.8 percent in 2016, the fastest full-year pace in three years.

“There’s a need to sustain growth on buoyant domestic consumption and public and private partnership for the Philippine economy remains strong,” Bolt said.

The ADB official cited strong domestic demand supported by expansionary fiscal policy as well as higher local employment.

Duterte’s 10-point agenda includes a revamp of the tax system, increasing support for education and agriculture and cutting red tape.

The Duterte administration socioeconomic agenda provides a medium-term anchor for the economy while the Philippines “2040 Vision” provides the long-term strategic framework, Bolt said.

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