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Palace pleased with country’s higher position in Economic Freedom Index

MALACAÑANG, Philippines – Malacañang has welcomed the results of the 2016 Economic Freedom Index that showed a big improvement in the Philippines’ world ranking.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said the country jumped to 70th place from 76th place last year.
“We welcome the results of the 2016 Index of Economic Freedom, which shows the Philippines jumping from 76th place last year to 70th place, having scored 63.1 out of a possible 100 points—up from 62.2 in the previous index. This is the highest score our country has received since the index began in 1995. In recent years, the Philippines has steadily improved its score, gaining a total of 6 points since 2012,” Secretary Lacierda said.
“According to the latest results, our country is the 14th freest among the 42 countries surveyed in the Asia-Pacific region,” he added.
He cited the country’s management of public finance and progress in improving the entrepreneurial environment, including government efforts to develop a more vibrant private sector, as among the successes lauded in the report.
Lacierda further said that the index noted the steady growth of the Philippine economy over the past five years, as well as the gradual modernization of the financial sector.
In terms of regulatory efficiency, he said, the report observed that the time and cost of dealing with licensing requirements have notably improved.
“These results once again affirm our belief that good governance is good economics. Apart from serving as a strong testament to the effectiveness of reforms, this positive news clearly shows how the Philippines has been progressing under the Aquino administration, and points toward even greater development—so long as we continue along the Straight Path,” the Palace official said.
Lacierda said the country’s future is in the hands of those whom the Filipino people would choose in the May elections.
“During the next elections, it will be up to our Bosses to chart the country’s future—whether we will gainfully sustain this upward trajectory, or either return to the regressive ways of the past or head toward an uncertain future,” said Lacierda.

Criselda Cabangon David, a happy mother of two kids, is a full-time Sociologist at the City Government of Lucena, Quezon Province. She is currently the Managing Editor of Ang Diaryo Natin Sunday News, a weekly local community newspaper in the Philippines and an active member of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines.