Villar hits ‘jobless’ economic growth
Yes there is growth but it’s a “jobless growth” because it didn’t trickle down to additional employment, Senate President Manuel Villar said here Sunday in his campaign for reelection.
Villar is running as an independent but is also a guest candidate of the
Villar said the employment rate of the country went down despite the country’s
5.4 percent growth rate in Gross National Product (GNP).
His critique came as President Arroyo’s economic team has been giving
briefings to assure the people the country continues to notch rosy economic
performance and shows promising prospect ahead if only people would take part
in sustaining it through “shared responsibility.”
Villar has pushed for higher government incentives to industry sectors that
generate more jobs for the economy.
He said a successful economic growth is that which redounds to jobs for the
people in the soonest possible time.
He cited the need to update the Philippine educational system proposing a
focus on courses that generate jobs after graduation.
He cited that an assessment of courses such as those in the medicalprofession, nursing, business process outsourcing should be made so that the government can encourage students to pursue those courses.
He said nothing much has improved with the educational system while a lot has
changed elsewhere in the world.
Villar said he will support a proposed legislation from the cooperativessector for some revisions in the Cooperative Code of the Philippines, likemore representation in the state-owned Land Bank of the Philippines.
He also eyed to study another proposal, to create an insurance system for investments made by cooperatives like that of the Philippine Depositors Insurance Corporation (PDIC).
He said the government, however, has enough money for microfinance, which small entrepreneurs could not access easily.
To help make microfinance more accessible to small entrepreneurs, Villar proposed for the creation of a system that supports non-government organizations and cooperatives as conduits in facilitating lending for the poor.
He said a set up like what Gawad Kalinga is doing for the country’s housing problem should be put up where the government channel support in micro financing.
He said cooperatives should be capacitated to lend to their constituents, buttheir cost is still high. He said banks have high interest rates for micro lending and have cumbersome requirements from microfinance clients.
He said requirements in applying for a microfinance loan in regular banks should be simplified to facilitate easier access to microfinance loans. (Walter I. Balane/MindaNews)