• Philippines ranks 18th in change index

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    The Philippines was among the top 20 countries ranked for its capacity to respond to change, a study said.

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    A new study by KPMG International in partnership with Oxford Economics said that the country ranked 18th in KPMG’s 2013 Change Readiness Index (CRI).

    The index measures the capacity of countries to respond to change, caused by shocks such as natural disasters or longer-term trends like technology, demographics, global competition and investment.

    “With the Philippine economy achieving strong growth in recent years and one of the nations with the most improved rankings in the 2013 CRI, we are optimistic that the country is better prepared to capitalize on change,” said Emmanuel Bonoan, chief operating officer and vice chairman for Tax of Manabat Sanagustin & Co., the Philippine member-firm of KPMG International.

    According to the study, change readiness relates to the capability of a country’s agents—its government, private and public enterprises, people and wider civil society—to anticipate, prepare for, manage, and respond to a wide range of change drivers, proactively cultivate the resulting opportunities, and mitigate any potential negative impacts.

    Key findings of the 2013 CRI revealed that a country’s wealth is not always a determining indicator of its ability to respond to and manage change, with a number of lower income countries ranked as having greater change readiness capability than some more “developed” countries.

    “For example, several lower middle-income countries such as the Philippines and Panama outperformed some higher-income countries in the rankings, placing above Italy, Poland, Brazil and China,” it stated.

    Meanwhile, Timothy A.A. Stiles, KPMG Global chair of International Development Assistance Services and a partner with KPMG in the US, said that wealth and high per capita income are closely correlated with change readiness, but income is not an insurmountable barrier to enhanced economic and social resilience.

    “This is an encouraging message for lower income countries, where strong institutions and governance can provide stability in time of stress and potentially open the door to new opportunity,” he said.

    Stiles added that a nation’s ability to respond to change is increasingly important to its success in building a sustainable economy and equitable society.

    He further said that the index can be a vital tool for governments, the development community, and business to make more informed decisions, whether on potential reforms or policy changes, managing risks, or making investments.

    Some of the countries included in the top 20 CRI rankings aside from the Philippines were Singapore, Japan, Israel, the United States, Chile, France, Thailand and Saudi Arabia.

    The 2013 Change Readiness Index ranked 90 countries, measuring them across 26 components to compare capabilities in the areas of enterprise (business environment), government, and people and civil society (social and human capital).

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