The Bangko Sentral said inflation this year will go up to as high as 5.8 percent.
Since the value of money is determined by the law of supply and demand, the rapid increase in the supply of money relative to the supply of goods and services brings down the value of money. Prices rise. This is what economists call inflation.
We have seen how prices of goods and services went sky high when inflation rate hit 5.2 percent. I can imagine how much more difficult things will be when it hits 5.8 percent. Many Filipinos can hardly afford to put food on the table as it is.
The culprit is of course the government, for borrowing money from the central bank.
There are, of course, scapegoats. Politicians like to blame businessmen and call them greedy for increasing the prices of the goods and services they sell. There is also the convenient tax reform program, and even foreign developments like the rise in oil prices worldwide.
The real problem of high inflation rate is when it grows faster than the real growth of the economy. It is almost always the marginalized sector that suffers.
That’s why I am wary when I hear reports that the government will continue to borrow from the BSP and other sources to finance its projects.
When money supply grows faster than the economy does, it will be the poor who will suffer.
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There are two basic problems with that draft charter submitted by the consultative committee. The draft worries many people, including businessmen.
First, there is the proposed 18 federated states, which include provinces and regions that can hardly sustain themselves economically.
Second, the protectionist provisions remain. These will continue to deter foreign investments that in turn will create more jobs for Filipinos.
The group Foundation for Economic Freedom, composed of former government officials and members of the business community, said it was concerned with the following provisions:
Article 2, Section 21 of the draft states that the federal republic “shall develop an independent and competitive national economy actually and effectively controlled by Filipinos.”
It’s a warning to foreign investors that Filipinos would still want control of the economy.
There is also Article 15, Section 3—Filipinos will continue to retain ownership of companies while Section 4 requires 60-percent Filipino ownership of companies engaged in the exploitation of natural resources.
Section 12 of the same article strictly limits ownership and management of mass media companies to Filipino-owned firms. In the advertising industry, firms must be 70 percent Filipino owned.
Section 13 retains the 60-percent mandatory Filipino ownership for firms engaged in the operation of public utilities and the same is stated on Section 15 for educational institutions.
Now, read this and weep: Section 17 states that the federal republic shall regulate and exercise authority over foreign investments in accordance with its national goals and priorities and the general welfare of the people.
The draft constitution retained the protectionist provisions of the 1987 Constitution and made one step further, especially in the case of exploitation and development of natural resources!
Mass media and advertising have become borderless.
My gulay, foreign investors may as well go to other countries!
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My memoirs—“Periodista—The Road Never Ends” will be launched middle of this month. The first 1,000 copies are being printed by Manila Times Publishing Co. of my dear friend, Dante Arevalo Ang. Dante is chairman emeritus of Manila Times and President Duterte’s special envoy for international public relations.
You may wonder—why is Manila Times publishing my book when I am chairman emeritus of the editorial board of Manila Standard, where I also write a column? It was Dante who convinced me to write my book. Out of delicadeza, I informed Manila Standard chairman Philip Romualdez and published Rollie Estabillo about it.
When Dante first brought up the idea of a book, I was hesitant. I knew publishing a book would entail a lot of money—money I don’t have.
My book is honest, readable, and was written straight from the heart.
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Malacañang wants to know: Who is the official of the Presidential Communications Operations Office who was the beneficiary of the P60-million contract of the Tulfos with the Tourism department? The lawyer of the Tulfos, Ferdinand Topacio, claimed this.
The lawyer said the money can no longer be returned because somebody at the PCOO has already benefited from it.
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Supreme Court Associate Justice Lucas Bersamin will be the next chief justice. He has been endorsed by no less than 10 of his colleagues. This means that the Supreme Court prefers an insider to succeed ousted Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.