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PH ready for AEC?

The vision is the integration of the economies of the 10 member-countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) whose combined gross domestic product is $2 trillion, to create a new economic powerhouse where there is free movement of goods, services, investment, skilled labor and capital. The goal is the establishment of the Asean Economic Community (AEC) by 2015. That’s next year, obviously pretty close, given the challenges still to be met. The AEC commits to form a single market and production base.

Posted: August 26th, 2014 in Editor's Pick,Editorial,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

More railways in our future

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“A successful city is one where people prefer to take public transport,” fellow Inquirer columnist Peter Wallace wrote me in reaction to my “Traffic dilemmas” article last week. I ended that piece arguing that to ease city traffic, there is no substitute to actual reduction in inefficient automobile usage in city streets. But we first need to do a good job at providing an efficient and comfortable mass transit system to effectively lure motorists out of their cars.

Posted: August 19th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Asean financial integration

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As a financial services professional, I applauded the signing into law of Republic Act No. 10641. Here was finally a concrete step toward the promise of further integrating the Philippines into the global economy and benefiting from it. That would be a massive step forward for us.

Posted: August 10th, 2014 in Inquirer Opinion,Talk of the Town | Read More »

Repos 101: BSP’s balancing act

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The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) finally raised key policy interest rates last week, mainly to forestall accelerating price hikes in the coming months. The annual inflation rate has averaged 4.2 percent so far this year, the fastest since 2011. This means that for every P100 worth of goods and services we bought last year, we now have to pay P104.20. This is actually much slower than the inflation rates we saw in the past decade and most of the 1990s, when it averaged 7.8 percent. Still, recent trends have pushed the BSP to make a move, after holding steady on these interest rates for nearly two years now. Analysts and observers keenly watch these rates as they provide an important signal of government policy that could have far-reaching impacts on the performance of the economy.

Posted: August 5th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

Looking beyond AEC 2015

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Forward-looking thinkers are already looking to 2030 even as people anticipate the coming of the Asean Economic Community (AEC) next year.

Posted: July 22nd, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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