Where credit is due: Arroyo, not Aquino, raised PH economy


ON strictly legal grounds, lawyers and justices will probably consider this as immaterial and irrelevant to the case of former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo that has now moved to the Supreme Court for resolution.

But I put it to the learned justices and the nation—that it is in every way material to consider:

First—That Arroyo is the economist and leader who passed the policy reforms that paved the way for the revival and resurgence of the Philippine economy.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) says so. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says so. The World Bank (WB) says so. And the credit-rating agencies also say as much.

Second—Since Day One of his presidency, Benigno S. Aquino III has relentlessly persecuted and prosecuted Arroyo for all kinds of offenses, including plunder, electoral sabotage and corruption, and proven nothing.

Third—Aquino has systematically taken (stolen) the credit for Arroyo’s legitimate achievements as President. And his cronies in the private sector and the media have conspired with him in propagating the lie.

If as Harvard moral and political philosopher Michael Sandel is correct when he writes that, “Justice is about answering the question ‘what’s the right thing to do?’ then the full impact of the Arroyo presidency on national life must be weighed by the High Court in resolving her case.

IMF on policy reforms

Whenever President Aquino speaks of Aroyo’s decade of leadership (2001 – 2010), he has derisively called it “the lost decade.”

It is a blatant lie. In truth, it was a decade of major policy reform in the Philippines, or so says the IMF, which usually knows what it is talking about.

In its “Regional Economic Outlook for Asia and the Pacific,” the IMF has cited the Philippines as one of three countries in the ASEAN region that have undertaken policy reforms that led to the narrowing of social inequality; the two others are Thailand and Malaysia.

Significantly, the Philippine reforms commended by the fund were all launched and undertaken during the term of President Arroyo and not during the current term of President Aquino.

Specifically, the IMF cited a range of measures implemented in the 2000s to alleviate poverty and inequality.

To quote the report: “In 2002, the Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services Program provided resources to poor rural municipalities to invest in public goods.

A package of pro-poor spending programs was launched in mid-2008 to mitigate the effects of the international food and fuel crisis.” Both these periods fell under the term of Mrs. Arroyo.

The IMF continued: “In addition, conditional cash transfers, also introduced in 2008 (also under Arroyo), set health and education goals for participants that aim to alleviate persistent inequality in access to education.”

“With a limited budgetary footprint (0.4 percent of gross domestic product), the program had covered 75 percent of all households identified as poor by the national targeting
scheme by 2013,” it said.

Finally, under the Arroyo administration, “the Philippine Congress mandated that from 2008 to 2018 at least 8 percent of banks’ loan portfolios be allocated to micro and small enterprises. Micro insurance has also been picking up in recent years, making the Philippines one of the top micro insurance markets in Asia,” IMF added.

Aquino and his economic managers, principally Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, have falsified the Philippine economic record during the first decade of the new century.

Far from being a time of “the sick man of Asia,” it was a time of continuous quarterly growth and stabilization for the Philippine economy.

A genuine credentialed economist

President Arroyo knew her stuff because she is a genuine credentialed economist, while Aquino and Purisima are not economists.

The Aquino administration, if it understood the reform challenge better, would be able to answer competently when it is asked what reforms President Aquino actually introduced.

The Arroyo reforms underpin the impressive growth of the economy over the past 10 years, and will continue to help the economy well into the future.

The IMF has expressed confidence in the rise of the economy this year and next year, because it will be fueled by strong domestic demand.

The IMF expects the economy to grow from 5.8 percent in 2015 to 6 percent this year and 6.2 percent in 2017.

“The modest uptick in growth is expected to be driven by the continued strength of
domestic demand, which will more than offset the drag from net exports,” the report said.

The report said net exports “will remain subdued” but pointed out that “spillovers from China are and will continue to be smaller than in other parts of the region.”

The domestic economy posted a lower-than-programmed growth in 2015 after a slowdown of growth in the first quarter of 2015 to 5 percent from 6.6 percent a quarter ago because of a drop in net exports and lower government spending.

It managed to recover in the succeeding quarters due to higher government spending and the contribution of the services sector.

The IMF report said: “Private investment growth is expected to remain robust, owing to improvements in public infrastructure and implementation of public-private partnership projects.”

This is the picture of the economy as the administration of incoming President Rodrigo Duterte takes over from Aquino on June 30.

Stealing from the victims

One of the vilest images of World War II was the way the Nazis looted the possessions of their Jewish victims, even their gold dentures.

Aquino’s theft of the credit for the revival and resurgence of the economy from Gloria Arroyo has a similar repugnance.

The least that the SC and the nation must do is to rule that her tormentor should not steal from his victim, and then set the victim free.



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  1. Don Ricardo Jose on

    Para kay Nhald baka hindi pa sya pinapanganak nung nuong nag People Power the Aquino have Master the Fabrication of Lies by using selected Media Personalities para pag takpan mga kasinungalingan at kapal palpakan nila sa Mundo… its True na maikli talaga ang Termino ng Presidente ng Pilipinas to make a Good Result… pero sino na nag paikli ng Termino ng mga ihahalal na Presidente diba ang Nanay nya?? Ano ang napatunayan sa mga Kaso na siniwalat nila?? Wla diba? Pag ang Tao tuwid at maraming nababanga marami talagang Maninira… pero President Macapagal Arroyo belives on Due Process and even submitt on it up to this Moment narinig mo ba syang Dumaing sa sinapit nya? Well it’s not because she is admitting that she is guilty she is patient enough for the Truth to be expose… and the truth is near dapat mahiya si Pinoy sa pang wawalang hiya nya hindi lang sa dati nyang Guro kundi sa isang Matandang Babae na hindi man lang nya bingyan ng pagalang yan ba ang Presidente na pinag mamalaki nyo na wlang Bahid ng Corruption? Walang Bahid kasi pinag takpan nila mga kagaguhan at kahihiyan nila… asaan sya nung kinakatay ng mg Pulis ang mga instik na turista na bumisita lang sa ating bansa? Kaka luk luk palamang nya nuon bilang Presidente at lumabas sya sa Madla madaling araw na para ipaalam ang kanyang saloobin sa pang yayari… ilang beses sya an Late sa Graduation ng mga Kasundaluhan? He is the Chief of Staff of our Soldiers since he is the President of this Country pero binaboy nya ang naoakahalagang Seremonya na ito na dapat ikaw ang mabuting ehemplo dahil lng sa katamaran mo bumangon? Eto pa in sinsngkalan nila ang Buhay ng kadundaluhan alang alang sa malaking pabuya at pinamahala sa Suspendidong Opisyal ang buhay ng mga bayani ng ating bayan para sa sairili nilang kapakanan?? Bakit sya inabot ng isang linggo at naunahan pa sya ng mga taga ibang Bansa na mag abot ng tulong para sa ating Mamayan na nasalanta Pinakamalakas na Bagyo sa kasay sayan ng Mundo…. bilang pangulo sya dapat ang nauna para mag hatid ng tulong sa ating Mamayan… hindi na nga agad sya tumulong inbinulsa pa nila ang Tulong na dapat sana ay ibinigay sa ating kababayan… there is a fine line between a Rober and a Theift… a Rober would use force to get what he want harras its victim and rob them not only with their Psysical belongings but to Rob their Morality as well… a Thief would get things secretly and put the blame of his crime to deviate the attention of his victim… Question is Who among them would be Noynoy Aquino?? The right answer he is Both… punyemas pinakyaw lahat ng kaswapangan nasa katawan nya… pati ng mga ka alyado nya… Well in this new Leardership I would not be surprise if Sandigan Bayan would be chasing… Mar Roxas… Cesar Purisima… even his Allies who are now currently at the Office… ang sukatan ng pagiging magaling na Presidente ay hindi ka nakapag pakulong ng mga Tao na tinatakan mo ng kasinungslingan… kundi ikaw ay pinasinungalingan pero hindi ma itago ang nag uumapaw na katotohanan… (=^___^=)

  2. Federico Lojo on

    Pnoy is the worst president the country ever had. He knew nothing about management and was and still is completely out of touch and out of tune. His arrogance is detestable and his bearing is so artificial. Now that he is no longer in power may God have mercy on him as he faces the people’s ire.

  3. Make sure the case against Abnoy n his cohort be filled so that these people shall be charged.

  4. Canseideserfunny on

    Finally somebody said it. Gloria Arroyo is really the one who paved the way of the economic growth of the Philippines, not that yellow cretin. Only stupid and ignorant people who believe everything they hear and read in the yellow controlled mainstream media actually think otherwise.

  5. victor m. hernandez on

    Sinunod lng ni P-Noy ang advice ng kanyang teacher sa Economics, si GMA, na ang sabi ay “build on what your have done” Kaya ok pa rin and PH economy.

  6. 10 years si ginang aroyo sa malacannang compare sa 6 years ni aquino. naging investment grade ang pilipinas at nabura sa ban ng international aviation authority sa europe at america ang philippine carrier natin. kelan nagkaroon ng sctex at tplex? di ba kay pnoy? kelan tayo unang nagkaroon ng mga makabagong barko at eroplanong pandigma? di ba kay pnoy? kelan nagkaroon ng chief justice at senador na napakulong? di ba kay pnoy? hindi perfect si pnoy, may sablay oo, pero the small fact na hindi siya kelanman nadawit sa anumang corruption controversies na gaya ni GMA na ngayon ay nakakulong na is enough accomplishment para maniwala ang mga pilipino sa mundo na mapagkakatiwalaan muli ang gobyerno..

    • I think you should be the next president! galing ng analysis mo! Stop reading manila times because everything you read here is true. Doon ka sa abs-cbn mag basa you won’t be disappointed.

    • Slex n tplex and some major road contractions where planned and funded at arroyo time, and there where implemented during pnoy time.

    • Ang sctex and tplex ay panahon ni gma. Libre po magbasa kahit sa wikipedia. Andun lahat ng info. Duh.

    • Lahat ng binanggit mo na in favor of PNoy ay walang impact sa kalagayan ng ordinaryong mamamayan. Aanhin mo yung mga makabagong barko at eroplanong pandigma, pagpakulong ng CJ at senadores, atbp kung naghihikahos naman ang mga mamamayang mahihirap? Bakit, may pinaghandaan ba tayong giyera kundi yung giyera laban sa kahirapan at pagpapahirap sa mga ordinaryong mamamayan dahil walang ginawa ang administration ni PNoy sa LRT, sa laglag bala at iba pang kagaguhan laban sa mga Pilipino? At bakit hindi kasama sa mga nabilanggo ang mga kakampi at kaibigan ni PNoy – dahil ba ‘immune’ sila? Kung ipagtanggol mo si PNoy akala mo ikaw lang ang tama. Tama na nga sa pagiging ‘Yellow’ – irrelevant na ang mga ganyan sa panahon ngayon.

    • Economical Free on

      Kung alam mo lang kung gaano kademanding ang mga mamayan ng mga Pilipinas. Kasi gusto nila na pag nagkaroon ng Presidente ay maging kasing yaman na agad ng mga Advance country which is imposibble to happen.

      For me it should be on Aquino Credits. Hindi niyo kasi alam na editorial lang yan, cnasabi lang yan ng opinion ng gumagawa at hindi ng katotohanan at di mo ba napapansin na biassed ang mga information na binibigay? Well pakisearch na lang sa Wikipedia yung ibig sabihinng editorial.

  7. I do not know why Pnoy is taking the credit regarding the increase macro economics of this nation. What did you do that changes the economy of this nation ? You relied on Secretary Abad on all budget and you do not know that there is still DAP in our present budget. You are so stupid that you are in trouble right now after your term. You cannot pinpoint Abad as the culprit since you signed the budget.

  8. Only the few remaining yellow turds (including Robredo and Noynoy) consider Aquino’s regime as successful. Any Tom, Dick and Juan knows that it is the worst ever presidency since Aguinaldo. Wala na ngang silbi, magnanakaw pa.

  9. Leodegardo Pruna on

    P-Noy and Cory’s years were wasted and gone. We have to learn from the experiences we went through during their times. That prosperity and peace can be achieved not through vengeance, greed, favoritism, KAMAG-ANAK INC., and the KKK but through honesty, competence, and love of country. God save the Philippines, God bless the Philippines.

  10. so what can be credited to this outgoing administration on the economy and social alleviation!??

  11. Very well said, Mr. Yen Makabenta.. Kaya hindi ako nagsasawang basahin ang column mo kasi napakaintelihente ng analysis mo.. You are one of the best and most intelligent columnist in the Philippines. BRAVO..

  12. Si ginoong Penoy ay napakagaling lang magbida ng mga Alamat na siya
    at mga dilawan ang may AKDA. “Story telling a Lie” sa mundong siya
    lang ang nakakaunawa. “His own make believed World” Nasaan na
    ang mga Katatakot na investors o mamumuhunan na ibinibida niya
    sa bawat Pamamasyal na ginagawa niya sa iba’t ibang bansa na
    eka niya nainganyo niyang mamuhunan sa Pilipinas? Maliban
    na lang sa “Smartmatic” yung Jv. ng pilipino pawang mga manloloko
    at ng kumpaniyang Dutch kuno na kahit walang puhunan ay pinapanalo
    ni DOTC<LTO, Abaya ng bilyones na transaksiyon para gumawa raw
    ng high tech na "Plaka" para sa mga sasakyan, sa mga mandarambong
    na kumuha ng kontrata ng Maintenance ng MRT mula sa Sumitomo,
    at sa maraming mga kilalang high roller sa Casino, at sa mga sindikatong
    intsik na supplayer ng pinagbabawal na Gamot. Tama ngang umasenso
    lahat ng mga sindikato sa Pilipinas, yan siguro pwede ipagmalaki ni

  13. Ignacio Balbutin on

    Yes the supreme court should GMA as innocent drop any case against her and pusue Aquino for treason committed by giving Sabah to the Malaysia

    • At present, PNoy offering a helping hand to DU30? WHAT A SHAME! He even does nothing in his 6 year term – only hijacked credits from the “genuine” economist and reformer – Former Pres. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.

  14. It usually takes 10 years to notice any change in regards to economic policy. China took 20 years of economic reforms to see tha positive change from a communist regime to a quasi democratic system. Arroyos main expertise is economics. She even studied in the USA to pursue studies in economics. I agree with your assessment that it was Arroyo that have the positive impact in our economy. Pnoy just continue the projects started by Arroyo like the PPP private public patrnership and conditional cash transfer which are all Arroyo project.

  15. Sayang ang column mo dong, puro ka paninira, pro-bad and anti-good, clearly the attitude of what Dterte is saying about a biased media. I haven’t read a write-up from Makabenta that promotes goodwill among people. You are always bias, everytime. You cannot see any light. your tunnel is always dark. Renew and be a good Samaritan, will you?

    • It is a “game of perception”. What & how you perceive things might be different from mine – taking into consideration where you are coming from. As they say, PERCEPTION IS REALITY.

    • mark del rosario on

      Funny how people react. When one speak of solid numbers, it is construed as “bad” if it exposes the deceipt of the current malacanang occupant. Ang paninira ay pagsasabi ng gawa-gawang istorya. May ebidensya po si Mr macabenta. Mag isip din. Huwag maging bitter na hindi nag-iisip.

    • this column is for us to us ponder and do some additional research for us not to conclude any inappropriate convolutions,.

  16. talagang wala ka na namang mapapalang matino kay NOYTARD eh,palibhasay lahi ng mga traydor ang putang-ina(lolo ay makapili ng panahom ng mga hapones) at lahi din ng mga balasubas(ninuno ay niloko ang bayan sa pagkasamay ng Luisita) ang gago, kaya puro kagaguhan,paghihiganti,panunuhol,pagpapabaya at paningarilyo lang ang alam ng gago.

    • Hahaha sobrang pagkabitter mo may pagmumura ka pa punta ka drugstore bili ka bitter go capsule yong 500mg para ma relax, tanong ko ulol ka bakit ikaw may naitulong ka ba sa gobyerno kung makapag comment ka wagas.bago ka magmura isipin mo muna kung nakatulong ka maski sa nagdaang gobyerno bago kay panot.

  17. i will never forget what GMA said before she stepped down from the Presidency. She said that she would lay down the foundation so that the next president would not find it difficult to run the economy. Pnoy just reaped what GMA had sown. The Philippine economy would have fared better if Pnoy wasn’t the president.

    • And that is also what PNot is ‘parrotting’….”that the next president (P-DU30 ) would not find it difficult to run the economy”!! :(

    • Kung ikukumpara sa isang itinatayong bahay, si GMA ang naglatag ng pundasyon at nagtayo ng mga haligi. Ang gagawin na lang ng mga susunod na pangulo, tulad ni PNoy at ngayon naman ay si Duterte, ay kumpletuhin ang bahay – lagyan ng mga dingding, bintana, pinto, bubong, atbp. Ang bilis ng pagbubuo at ganda ng bahay ay nakasalalay sa mga bagong pinuno.

      Ang punto po natin ay may kakayahan na ang ating bansa na umangat… hindi tulad noon, na ang kaya lang ng ekonomiya natin ay isang bahay kubo, na pagdating ng bagyo at unos, ay agad nasisira at bumabagsak. May matibay na tayong pundasyon para magtayo ng isang bahay na bato.

      Sino ba ang nakapansin, sa gitna ng Recession at Global Financial Crisis nung 2008 at 2009, nang ang America at iba pang malalaking bansa sa buong mundo ay nalugmok ang ekonomiya (marami ang nawalan ng trabaho at maraming mga negosyo ang nalugi at tuluyang nagsara), isa ang Pilipinas sa iilang bansa na nanatiling nakatayo dahil sa mga reporma sa ekonomiya na ginawa ni GMA? Wala, dahil ang lahat ay nakatutok sa mga paratang ng korapsyon at pagnanakaw daw ng dating pangulo. (Hindi ba taliwas ang pagandahin ang ekonomiya at nakawan ito? Kung katotohanan ang hinahanap mo, napansin mo sana ito.)

      The Philippines that used to be called the sick man of Asia is now said to be turning the tide to become the next Asian miracle. But Central Bank Governer Amando M. Tetangco, Jr., in a speech in 2014, said : “To be perfectly frank, I do not relish that we are called a miracle. The evidence will show that we are, where we are now because of hard-fought reforms.

      XXX Our growth story has been underpinned by solid anchors…”

  18. True!

    Gloria put the Philippines on AUTO PILOT during the term of BS Aquino who DOES NOTHING!

  19. P.Akialamiro on

    In a way, this is what Pres.-elect Duterte mentioned regarding some media people; they must have been ‘greased’ by B S Aquino III, or The Last, to enhance Aquino’s image by implying that the good economy outlook was due to him. I wonder if the facts stated and confirmed by the different international agencies can be disputed by the Aquino administration.

    But, on the contrary, B S Aquino claimed otherwise when it comes to his own failure to address a national problem; it’s Arroyo’s own creation or somebody else’s. Can he ever claim any significant achievement during his six-year term as President, or even as a Legislator? What a waste and what a joke the Filipinos have to go through as they were taken by their emotions and not by their ‘cerebrations’..

    • Well, certain people voted for him. Ano kaya nasa konsensya ng mga taong nagluklok kay beneegno? Di ba accessory din sila sa malawakang pandarambong sa kaban ng bayan?

    • yan ang resulta ng sobrang panonood ng teleserye. ang teleserye ay kathang isip lang at hindi dapat isiping totoo. naging bano ang mga pinoy sa kapapanood ng teleserye na walang ginawa kung hindi magiyakan at apihin ang mga bida.

    • Sa totoo lang maraming inumpisahan na pundasyon si Gloria.Sa awa ng Diyos mga alagad ni Noy,mga bulag sa parting Bulacan mga pundasyon na dati naumpisahan ni Gloria ganoon pa rin.natapos si Noy pundasyon pa rin.In fairness magdrive kayo papuntang North makikita nyo ang natapos.Ang nakalimutan na maraming nasa laylayan ng Lipunan ang nakalimutan.Paano ang Visayas and Mindanao?