PH on track towards upper middle class status by next year: Marcos

Pia Gutierrez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 21 2022 09:28 AM | Updated as of Sep 21 2022 12:52 PM

The Philippines is on track to achieve upper middle-income status by 2023, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr said Tuesday.

In his speech at the 77th United Nations General Assembly, the Philippine leader touted significant strides achieved by the country towards sustainable development in the past three decades despite the challenges of the pandemic and global economic upheavals.

Marcos Jr also expects the country to become moderately prosperous by 2040, with government devoting ‘steady investment in food [security], public health, education, and other social services.’

"I am confident that we will achieve this vision,” he said.

"Yet no nation stands alone. The achievement of our national ambition requires a global environment that creates conditions that allow all nations, including ours, to thrive in peace. We need the United Nations to continue to work. And we, the Philippines, are determined to be part of that solution.”

Marcos, who concurrently serves as the Philippines’ agriculture chief, also called for investments in food security. He noted the need to ‘take concrete steps towards a modern and resilient agriculture,’ explaining that COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine has clearly demonstrated the ‘fragility’ of the world’s food security.

"Food is not just a trade commodity nor a livelihood. It is an existential imperative, and a moral one. It is the very basis of human security," he said.

He cited efforts of the Philippine government to attain food self-sufficiency and security include ‘providing innovative solutions and financial support to farmers and fisher-folk to adapt new technologies and connect to national and global value supply chains.’

"We look forward to forging cooperation with the UN and our partners to boost agricultural productivity and food security," he said.

Investments in education are also key, Marcos Jr said, noting the need to equip people ‘with the tools they need to meet the challenges of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.’

“My administration is prepared to make such investments,” he said.

"There is perhaps no greater renewable resource than the creativity and innovation of our young. We understand the value of harnessing our people’s talents by creating a robust and creative economy. We will continue to work with partners in promoting this at the international level," he added.