Casiño wants job creating strategy instead of jobless growth

PARTYLIST Rep. Teddy Casiño today criticized the much ballyhooed 6.6% GDP growth as jobless growth dependent on overseas remittances, foreign debt and speculative investments, all hallmarks of a weak economy.

He called on the Aquino government to overhaul its economic strategy by giving premium to creating stable jobs in the country instead of continuing with labor export and economic liberalization policies.

The government has no agricultural modernization and industrial development plan and has failed in implementing thoroughgoing agrarian reform.

“I am challenging Aquino to depart from jobless growth and IMF-WB economic liberalization which has seriously damage our local agriculture and industry. Growth is meaningless to ordinary people without jobs and lower prices,” the progressive solon said.

Casiño also pointed out that the former Pres. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s praise of his former economics student; now Pres. Benigno Aquino III shows that at least economic policy wise they are the same in implementing privatization, liberalization and deregulation policies which are detrimental to the livelihood of Filipinos.

The Makabayan senatorial bet said many reforms still had to be made for the ordinary folk to feel the supposed growth of the economy.

“Sa totoo lang wala naman talaga silang pinag-iba. Taun-taon naman halos sinasabi ng gobyerno na lumago ang ekonomiya. Pero taun-taon din tumataas ang presyo ng mga bilihin, lumulubog sa hirap ang ating mga magsasaka, at nalalagas ang bilang ng mga may permanenteng trabaho. Ang nakikinabang sa anumang paglago ng ekonomiya ay yun dati nang mayayaman at mga dayuhan,” he stressed.

Casiño is pushing for the reduction of prices by removing the VAT on basic utilities like power, watere and oil. He is also for the repeal of the Oil Deregulation Law and the EPIRA.

“Nakaranas din tayo noon ng mas mataas na growth rate, only to fall later on. Wala namang naging pag-unlad. Wala kasing laman ang growth na ito. Stellar ang 6.6% growth? Eh tayo nga ang may pinaka-malalang unemployment sa East Asia,” the Bayan Muna representative said.*

“Kung mababa ang presyo at may trabaho, mas tataas ang demand, mas lalago ang ekonomiya,” he said. “Mananatili din tayong bottom-feeders kung aasa lang tayo sa export-oriented industries at low-wage manufacturing. The government should be utilizing the country’s natural and labor resources to create and to earn in the long-run.”

The senatorial bet also wants to enact a new agrarian reform program to increase farmers’ incomes and ensure a steady supply of locally-produced agricultural products as well as a national industrial strategy involving small, medium enterprises and strategic industries.

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