‘Balancing Health and Economy’ —Go hails economic recovery efforts as PH GDP grows 5.6% in 2021

‘Balancing Health and Economy’ —Go hails economic recovery efforts as PH GDP grows 5.6% in 2021

By Ernie Reyes

MANILA — Senator Christopher “Bong” Go commended the recovery efforts of the Duterte Administration to the economic challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic after the country reported a Gross Domestic Product growth rate of 5.6% in 2021, beating the earlier targets.

“Ang 5.6% GDP growth ng Pilipinas sa buong taon ang isa sa pinakamataas sa buong Southeast Asia, ayon sa datos. Inaasahan ng mga eksperto na 1-4% lang ang GDP growth ng mga bansa sa rehiyon dahil nga sa kasalukuyang pandemya,” Go noted.

For the fourth quarter alone, the country recorded a 7.7% growth, propelling it ahead of most of its neighbors. As a result, the government is keeping its ambitious target of 7% to 9% growth in 2022.

“Since day one ng pandemya, maingat na binabalanse ng gobyerno ang kalusugan at kabuhayan ng mga mamamayan natin. Kahit may krisis, sinisikap nating maging malakas at maunlad ang ekonomiya upang magkaroon muli ng trabaho ang mga nawalan at maiwasan ang gutom at hirap,” remarked Go.

“Hangad ng administrasyon na mabigyan ng mas maginhawang buhay ang maraming Pilipino sa kabila ng mga hamon sa katatagan ng ating bansa,” he continued.

The lawmaker noted that the country’s strong growth performance was possible due to more businesses reopening. The industry and service sectors grew by 8.2% and 5.3%, respectively. Private consumption also went up by 4.2%.

While welcoming these developments, the senator warned that the continuous spread of COVID-19 and its highly transmissible variants may still likely disrupt economic activities in the foreseeable future. He underscored the need to sustain an aggressive vaccination drive to fast-track return to normalcy.

“Maganda na sana ang direksyon ng ating recovery efforts kung hindi dumating itong Omicron at dumami muli ang bilang ng nagkakasakit. Pero marami pa rin tayong dapat ipagpasalamat. Patuloy tayong maging disiplinado at mag-ingat. Huwag natin sayangin ang pinaghirapan natin noong nakaraang taon,” Go remarked.

Getting inoculated, Go added, is still the best investment any person can make to protect one’s health. By being vaccinated, people can reduce their risk of developing severe symptoms of the disease and needing hospitalization, thus lowering their healthcare expenses. They may then continue working and contributing to the economy, said Go.

“Kung mas maraming Pilipino ang mabibigyan ng proteksyon gamit ang bakuna, mas kokonti ang bilang ng mga tinatamaan ng malubhang sakit. Posibleng mas luluwag pa ang mga patakaran para sumigla pa ang ating ekonomiya,” he said.

“Kung kaya naman umaapela akong muli sa mga qualified na magpabakuna na. Libre naman ito. Ang bakuna ang susi para makabalik na tayo sa normal na pamumuhay,” he appealed.

As of January 26, the government has obtained a total of 216.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines and administered 125.1 million doses. Of this figure, 60.1 million Filipinos have received their first dose while 58.1 million are fully vaccinated. Another 6.9 million have obtained their booster shots.

The senator also thanked the economic frontliners, saying, “Maliban sa mga medical frontliners natin, maraming salamat din sa ating mga economic frontliners na nagsasakripisyo upang makaraos ang kanilang pamilya at gumulong ang ating ekonomiya. Mula sa mga market vendors, drivers hanggang sa mga simpleng manggagawa, maraming salamat.”

“Siguraduhin lang natin na mas ramdam sa ibaba ang paglago ng ating ekonomiya. At sa muling pagbangon natin, kailangang walang Pilipinong maiiwan,” he stressed. (ai/mtvn)

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