MANILA, October 11, 2017 — The Palace’s Entrepreneurship Adviser on Tuesday said the business community is solidly behind President Rodrigo Duterte, with its members expressing determination to help the government.
“Right now, the barometer of confidence to me in the business side is pretty high. And that can continue to be maintained if they see that the country is moving forward,” Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Jose Ma. Concepcion III said in a press briefing in Malacañang.
“So that’s how I get the feel of how the business community, not only from my level or the large businesses who are very bullish about the Philippine scenario. But very bullish also at the bottom, especially the small entrepreneurs,” he added.
The business confidence remains in favor of the government, Concepcion said, noting that the Philippine Stock Exchange has reached an all-time high last week.
“As you can see, our stock market a couple of days ago for a while hit all-time high. And if there is no business confidence, then you won’t see the stock market making a new high,” he said.
The Presidential Adviser said conglomerates, such as the Ayalas, Lucio Tan, and the Gokongweis, have formed a cluster to work closely with the administration’s economic team.
“Briefly about a week ago, the conglomerates met with the economic team, we were briefed. And we, for the past actually month or so, have been engaging with them on how the private sector can partner closely with the government in their Build, Build, Build program,” Concepcion said.
“And now, the business sector has — and wants to engage with this government to really be partners with them in their nationwide building program,” he said.
Concepcion noted that the businessmen were very much open to bring the private sector to public-private partnerships and have expressed extreme interest in the country’s airports as well.
He said there are companies which have showed interest in Ninoy Aquino International Airport, in Bulacan, in Sangley, and other provincial airports.
“So if you’re saying that there is a weakness in confidence in the business community, definitely not,” Concepcion said.
The Presidential Adviser also cited that labor force is currently peaceful.
“You can count. I don’t know if I’ve heard of many major strikes, basically, we have industrial peace,” he said.
During the same press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella reported the increase of P27.1 billion for visitor receipts in June this year.
Citing Tourism department’s data, he said this is 30.68-percent higher than last year’s P20.8 billion visitor receipts for the same month.
Abella said this results in a total amount of P146.34 billion visitor receipts for the period of January to June 2017, which is 14.89 percent higher than P127.37 billion of the same period last year.
Tourist arrivals for June also rose by 3.42 percent to 474,854 from 459,138 last year.
“Apparently visitors have a great confidence in the nation,” Abella said. (PND)