Tuesday, 16 February 2010

WB: 7% growth possible

Roderick T. dela Cruz
Manila Standard

A fast and sustained annual growth of 7 percent or higher is possible for the Philippines with the “right mix of ingredients,” World Bank country director Bert Hofman said Monday.

Hofman said the growth level could help the Philippines catch up with its high-income neighbors and also benefit more people.

Hofman referred to the performance of China, Taiwan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan, which experienced average growth rates of 7 percent or more over a period of 25 years or longer.

Citing a World Bank study titled “The Growth Report: Strategies for Sustained Growth and Inclusive Development,” Hofman said a fast and sustained growth was not a miracle.

“It is attainable for developing countries with the right mix of ingredients,” he said.

The study looked into the policies adopted by 13 economies that led to sustained high growth rates for long periods since 1950.

Hofman said policies that allowed economic growth to be shared by all sectors of society, especially the poorest of the poor, along with “the right mix of ingredients,” usually resulted in broad-based development.

He said the rapidly-growing economies of Asia achieved their status by fully engaging with the global economy, maintaining macroeconomic stability, mustering high rates of savings and investment, letting markets allocate resources and electing committed, credible and capable governments.

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