Digital infra will boost PH growth, says NEDA

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Pushing for digital transformation will propel the country’s growth amid the pandemic, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon said on Tuesday, Sept. 29.

NEDA undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon

In an online media briefing, Edillon said the government aims to put in place digital infrastructure to make the economy resilient during the global health crisis.

“With our push for digital infrastructure, this will really catapult us,” she said in mixed English and Filipino. “We are really confident that this (is) really a good thing for us because of this push for greater digitalization.”

She said digital transformation is one of the priorities of the Task Group on Recovery, along with health system improvement, food security, learning continuity, and ecological integrity. She added the updated Philippine Development Plan (PDP) also focuses on digital transformation as well as health and risk reduction.

While putting in place digital infrastructure, Edillon said there is also a need to retool and reskill the labor force towards digital skills.

Meanwhile, the NEDA official expects better gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the third quarter of the year compared to the previous quarter.

“We are hoping that it will be better than the second quarter but we don’t think it will be a positive on a year-on-year,” she said, adding the improvement in the Labor Force Survey for July.

However, Edillon cited economic headwinds such as the manufacturing purchasing managers’ index, which is still below the 50-mark, the negative consumer and business outlook for the third quarter, and the modified enhanced community quarantine in Metro Manila and four other provinces in August. — Kris Crismundo (PNA)

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