PH can follow Thai growth path with Duterte shift to China


Posted at Oct 14 2016 03:24 PM

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang applauds next to Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte after they posed for a photo during the ASEAN Plus Three Summit in Vientiane, Laos September 7, 2016. Soe Zeya Tun, Reuters/File Photo

MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte’s courting China for investments in infrastructure will help the Philippines follow Thailand’s growth path, an analyst said Friday.

The Philippines, like Thailand in 1994, has a per capita gross domestic product of $2,612 and is looking at building its transportation networks and boosting agriculture.

“What set Thailand is eventually talking about investing in infrastructure. That eventually enabled tourism, manufacturing and agriculture to eventually improve their economy since 1994,” BDO Unibank chief market Strategist Jonathan Ravelas said.

“What I’m telling you now is history. The Philippines is eventually just embarking on the same. We’re a bit delayed, we’re playing a catch-up game, but we’re following the Thailand story,” he said.

Duterte is visiting China next week with hundreds of businessmen, as he seeks to repair ties that have been strained by a bitter sea dispute while distancing the Philippines from its traditional ally, the United States.

Accompanied by hundreds of businessmen, Duterte is scheduled to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang