• PH 5-yr plan to seek input from anti-poverty forum

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    The Duterte administration is consolidating into its five-year development plan the inputs of participants in the first Philippine Development Forum (PDF), which will kick off today (Tuesday) in Davao City.

    In a statement Monday, the Department of Finance said the two-day development forum—the first under the Duterte administration—will be held at the SMX Convention Center. It seeks to reach a consensus and forge collective action from various stakeholders on how best to implement the government’s 10-point socioeconomic agenda.

    Inputs from the participants will be incorporated into a plan of action under the 2017-2022 Philippine Development Plan, now being crafted by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).

    Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez 3rd said executives from development partners like the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank plus other global financial institutions, along with civil society groups and representatives of foreign governments, are expected to join some 300 forum participants.

    “The Department of Finance (DOF) is holding a Philippine Development Forum in Davao City on November 8 and 9 and I would like to invite all these groups to participate in the forum because there they can air their concerns and we can discuss the future direction of our country,” Dominguez told a press briefing last week.

    Dominguez chairs the forum, with Secretary Jesus Dureza of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) as co-chairperson.

    On a theme of “Poverty Reduction through the Vigorous Implementation of the 10-Point Socioeconomic Agenda, the forum focuses on five priority areas of concern:

    Macroeconomic and fiscal policies, which include the comprehensive tax reform proposed by the DOF and the spending strategy of the Department of Budget and Management;

    Infrastructure and competitiveness, which covers infrastructure investment, steps to revitalize the public-private partnership (PPP) program, development of science and technology, building an efficient transport network and improving the ease of doing business;

    Rural development, which includes land administration and management, food security and the participation of local government units in countryside development;

    Human capital development, which covers education, health care and social protection for the poorest for the poor, along with promoting responsible parenthood and implementing the Reproductive Health Law; and
    Mindanao, which includes the OPAPP’s presentation of its six-point peace and development roadmap for the region.

    The plenary session will commence with a presentation of how NEDA envisions to translate the 10-point reform agenda into a plan of action through the PDF 2017-2022.

    The NEDA will take into account the results of the earlier Sulong Pilipinas dialogues with the business community, civil society, LGUs and champions of climate change.

    Cabinet members will preside over the plenary discussion on the government’s overall development programs to reduce poverty and ensure inclusive growth.

    On the second day of the forum, the plenary session will reconvene for the presentation of reports and recommendations.

    Dureza will open the final session while Dominguez will report on the highlights of the previous days’ proceedings.

    Chaired by the DOF, the PDF serves as the primary mechanism for facilitating policy dialogues among stakeholders, including the national government and LGUs, business sector, development partner community, academe and civil society on the government’s development agenda.

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