Philippines – Change is Coming

Philippine flag --- Image by © Jim Barber/Corbis

The recent election of our new Philippine President, Rodrigo Duterte has already dramatically changed several on going issues the previous administration can’t seem to resolve or plainly just didn’t have enough resources and will power to do.  So far, we are looking forward to the following changes :

  1.  Federalism – A federal form of government which creates autonomous regions or states where state governments administer their own affairs independent of the central government.
  2.  Corruption – ever wonder why every Tom, Dick and Harry want to be a government official in the Philippines ?  Some of them aren’t even qualified, not even a degree in law ! This  hopefully will be addressed sooner or later as President Duterte will prioritize other more important matters.  The Philippines is rich and can be seen by the upgrades done by financial  credit bureaus such as Fitch, Moody’s, ADB, IMF, however, government officials have been taking advantage of the Filipino people’s money.
  3.  Decentralization – push investments in the areas that have been left behind such as Mindanao (Davao and  Cagayan de Oro ), Pampanga ( Clark Development ), Laguna, Cavite, Bacolod,  Cebu, Iloilo in the Visayas region.  This will also decongest the horrendous “traffic” we’ve been experiencing for the last several years ( if my memory serves me right, it got worse when the  City of Manila disallowed the trucks / trailers passing thru the port area thus diverting the traffic elsewhere.
  4.  Infrastructure – much needed infrastructure needed for foreign direct investments to come in.  Biggest is in transportation and road network.  MRT alone is already being addressed.  However, the Filipino people also have to do their share on disciplining ourselves on the road.  ( I always wonder why they don’t have educational videos on television which would teach the Filipino mass on the proper courtesy of driving on the road ).  Take note that the following infrastructures are already on the pipeline : a)  MRT – buy 30-50 more carriages to reduce lines ; b) reroute Airline arrivals to Clark Airport  and build a new one ; c) put more Policemen  to address traffic ( this is very visible as i see Police everywhere, this is a preventive measure for crimes ) ; d)  build 3 major train systems: the  Mindanao railway, Manila-Bicol railway, and Manila-Batangas railway.
  5.  Emergency hotlines – 911 and 8888 are already running as of yesterday, this is true service to the Filipino people, money spent wisely rather than going to the pockets of corrupt officials.
  6.  Reduction of Taxes – we have one of the highest taxes in the Asean region, why was this never addressed ?  Why ? Specially for the employees that are just making minimum wage and to top it off, Contractual work which means they have to find another job thereafter.
  7.  Faster Internet – for people in the know, it’s been a monopoly for the two giant telephone companies and what a profit they have both been raking in for sometime now.
  8.  Was on Drugs and Crime – it’s very visible that change has occurred for the good of the people, country and hopefully can go on for the future generation.
  9.  Economy – positive growth is already foreseen by credit bureaus and local bankers.  The stock market alone has already breached the 8000 level and is seen to go between 10000 to 12000  by 2020.
  10.  Real Estate – more affordable property developments catering to the masses in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.  Property values will continue to appreciate.
  11.  Environmental  issues – with DENR Secretary Gina Lopez in the reign, we have already seen changes inline with responsible mining.  The Philippines is rich in resources and we hope that  this will bring our mining industry to a higher level.
  12.  Industrialization – boom in the Industrial sector.  We have experienced a steady growth on the manufacturing, logistics and factory sector for the last five years however, this was  overshadowed by the office sector through the BPO sector.  This will change as countries such as Japan, Taiwan and other countries who are currently in China want to move their operations to the Philippines.  Major change has to happen with regards to Tax Incentives, lower electricity rates and of course, Infrastructure !
  13. Real Estate Investment Trust ( REITs ) – this are Real Estate companies that own income generating asset such as malls, hotels, warehouses and office buildings, to name a few and the investing public are given the opportunity to owns shares of these companies.

Soon to come will be my newsletter on Philippine Real Estate !  Have a great day ….

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Thank you.

Robert G. Sarmiento Properties
Professional Affiliation :
Philippine Association of Real Estate Brokers
Member, City of Taguig Real Estate Board 2016
Real Estate Broker’s Association of the Philippines
President, Greenhills Chapter 2008, 2009
Philippine Association of Real Estate Brokers
San Juan Mandaluyong Chapter 1998, 1999
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