NEDA Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua, in Cordillera Virtual PDP Caravan on Thursday, said the PDP that was drafted in 2017 has been updated for an effective response to the COVID – 19 and to guide the country towards recovery and transformation to new and better normal.
Chua shared that the Philippines was doing good in 2018 with poverty rate down to an all time low of 16.7 percent. If not for the pandemic, the country may have already moved up to upper middle income class which is two years ahead of the 2022 target.The COVID – 19 disrupted the country’s growth momentum and development trajectory.
The PDP, he said, was enhanced to respond to the challenges brought by the pandemic and now focused on three pillars namely, “Malasakit” - building a high trust society, “Pagbabago” or transforming towards equity and resiliency, and “Patuloy na pag-unlad” or increasing growth potential.
As NEDA is now conducting series of virtual caravans to engage the communities on the ground, Chua encouraged Cordillera stakeholders to contribute solutions for the country’s recovery.
“The reality today is that the virus is not going to go away very soon. It will continue to test our resilience, our health care system, our economic foundations and even our personal grit.”
“The challenge today is learning to live with the virus while addressing its impact on our health. This entails fully implementing the Protect, Detect, Isolate, Treat and Reintegrate strategy while gradually and safely reopening our economy, so that we can look after the total health and welfare of the people and address COVID and non - COVID threats such as hunger, unemployment and poverty.”
“We are living in unprecedented time. While we may be surrounded by fear and uncertainty, may we find hope and strength in each other towards gathering such as this. For we are joined by our fellow countrymen to share the same aspirations. We are eager to share to you the updated PDP and to listen to your experience and ideas on how we can achieve a healthy and resilient Philippines. Let us work together to bounce back from this crisis and build a better future for our country”, Chua stressed.
In the virtual caravan, NEDA Assistant Secretary for Policy and Planning Carlos Bernardo Abad Santos gave an overview of the enhanced PDP 2017 – 2022 while NEDA – CAR Assistant Regional Director Greg Aris presented the highlights of the updated Cordillera Regional Development Plan. (JDP/CCD-PIA CAR)
By Carlito C. Dar