PRESIDENT Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. rang on Tuesday, September 20, 2022 (Manila time), the closing bell of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), which signals the end of the day’s trading.

In a statement, Marcos said his engagement at the NYSE serves as an “invaluable opportunity” for the country to share with business leaders how the Philippines is ramping up efforts to open up the economy and accelerate recovery amid the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.

“Bouncing back from the pandemic, the Philippine economy has seen robust growth since last year and has returned to its path toward upper-middle-income country status, achievable within the next few years,” he said in his speech.

He also highlighted the efforts of the administration to increase the scope for mutually beneficial investments, which will result in more jobs and a better quality of life in the country.

The President cited the key legislations that aim to further liberalize the economy’ post-pandemic recovery, which include lowering corporate income tax rates and rationalizing fiscal incentives; reducing the minimum paid-up capital requirements for foreign retailers and startups bringing in advanced technology; and allowing full foreign ownership of companies providing public services.

He said these legislations, along with maintaining sound macroeconomic fundamentals in the country, will make the Philippines a key-destination for investments.

Marcos reiterated his administration’s high prioritization on implementing policies to enhance food security and the quality of education and skills of workers, reduce energy, transport, and logistics costs and strengthen social protection.

He expressed confidence about the country’s better future, due to its economic resiliency reinforced by sound policies and decisive leadership, amid the “external headwinds.”

“In the near-term, our top priorities are protecting the purchasing power of families by managing inflation, reducing the scarring effects of the pandemic, and ensuring sound macroeconomic fundamentals,” said Marcos.

“As we pursue our short-term agenda, we build the foundations for a stronger, more inclusive future. Our medium-term agenda includes reducing the poverty rate to single digits by 2028 and undergoing an industrial transformation through which science, technology, innovation, and sustainability will drive our industries,” he added.

Marcos also highlighted the country’s workforce as the best asset to boosting the economic transformation and growth.

He vowed to continue and support the country’s education system and technical abilities in order to produce more workers that are competitive around the world.

Marcos said he sees the United States as a close partner in achieving such goals.

On Sunday, Marcos affirmed the country’s long-standing ties with the US.

“Our bilateral alliance with the United States is possibly as important a policy as there is in the Philippines. Our relations with the United States remain strong, and I believe we will make them stronger in the coming years,” he said. (SunStar Philippines)