World Bank President Jim Yong Kim declared that the Philippines would be the next Asian “miracle.”
Kim in Manila for a two-day visit said the World Bank downgraded its “overall global [economic] growth forecast from 3.2 percent to 2.8 percent. But did not do so for the Philippine economy, where the forecast remained “around 6.4 percent with a lot of upside going into the future.
“So I will just say again maintain these reforms, continue on the path that you’re on, and I think the future is very bright for the Philippines,” Kim said.
Kim later offered a toast during a luncheon in the Palace, saying to President Aquino that “each of those things you’re doing are not only the right thing to do but they’re laying the foundations for your economic growth in the future.”
“And we are absolutely certain that the impact of your administration will be felt far beyond the six years that you have as President,” Kim said.
He said President Aquino should take much of the credit for the Philippine turnaround.
“Can the Philippines be the next Asian miracle? [After] coming here, I think there is no question that is the case,” Kim said.
He also announced that the World Bank was providing $119 million for the construction of new roads, bridges and irrigation systems in Muslim Mindanao in support of efforts to promote peace and economic development in the region.
Kim praised on Aquino’s anti-graft campaign, which has seen the President’s predecessor and three sitting senators charged with corruption, as well as the impeachment of a Chief Justice.
“Among the most important things you can do is tackle corruption and . . . that is one of the things that the [Aquino] government is doing frankly better than any government in the world,” Kim said.
“Around the world, the spread of information technology is converging with grassroots movements for transparency, accountability and citizen empowerment,” he said.
Under Aquino’s leadership, he said, “the Philippines is absolutely at the forefront of this transformation.”
Kim said the Philippines, where one quarter of the roughly 100 million people live in deep poverty, had huge potential.
He cited the country’s strong macroeconomic fundamentals, prudent monetary policies and young workforce.
Kim’s strong endorsement was a timely boost for Aquino, with two polls released this week showing the President’s public support dropping to record lows amid deep controversy over an economic stimulus program.- See more at: http://www.goodnewspilipinas.co/world-bank-chief-hails-ph-next-asian-miracle/#sthash.QRk129dU.dpuf