PALACE WELCOMES MOODY'D POSITIVE OUTLOOK ON RP
MANILA, FEBRUARY 14, 2009 (STAR) By Marvin Sy - Malacañang welcomed the two recent positive outlooks given by Moody’s Investors Service and its affiliate on the Philippines as a demonstration of the international community’s recognition of how effectively the government is managing the economy amid the global financial crisis.
Press Secretary Cerge Remonde argued that the positive outlooks given by Moody’s on the country’s economic growth for this year as well as the credit ratings should be used as a strong argument in favor of the administration, which is suffering from a controversy regarding corruption in the bidding of World Bank-funded projects.
“Despite everything that some people are saying about our country losing honor and prestige internationally, I’m very happy to report that Moody’s has affirmed its positive outlook on the Republic of the Philippines,” Remonde said.
Moody’s affirmed its positive outlook on the country’s B1 foreign and local currency government ratings, the Ba3 country ceiling for foreign currency bonds and the B1 country ceiling for foreign currency bank deposits.
Early this week, Moody’s Ratings said that it expects the Philippines to outperform its Asian neighbors this year, with growth, as measured by gross domestic product, growing by 3.3 percent.
Remonde said that Moody’s has, in effect, recognized the success of the administration in handling the economy by considering it as one of the better economies in this part of the world.
He noted that the outlook of Moody’s should also be taken against the backdrop of the World Bank road project controversy, which he said supposedly put the country in a very bad light in the international community.
In spite of the controversy, Remonde noted that the Philippines managed to secure positive growth forecasts and even greater funding for infrastructure projects coming from the World Bank.
Executive Secretary Eduardo Ermita said that the lower growth rate projection given by Moody’s for the Philippines is still something worth celebrating considering that the global financial crisis has left most of the country’s neighbors and the world with contracting economies.
“Can you imagine, Singapore, a very progressive city state, is going down by so much. Indonesia and the Philippines are enjoying a positive growth rate and that’s something that we should be happy about,” Ermita said.
Ermita reiterated that the government would remain vigilant despite the positive outlook.
“We have to improve on our economic performance so that our people will not suffer so much from the economic crisis,” he said.
Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi
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