Sep 292013

MANILA, Philippines – The National Competitiveness Council (NCC) is focusing on monitoring key initiatives and reforms meant to further strengthen areas where the Philippine rankings are lower in global competitiveness ratings.

“We had improvements for three years on a row. We are very near our target. We are now on the top 40 percent of the world, our original target was to be in the top 33 percent,” said NCC private sector co-chairman Guillermo Luz.

“We are on target as far as most of our competitiveness indicators are concerned.  We plan to continue that trend for the next three years,” he added.

Luz said the Council will continue focusing on initiatives relating to ease of doing business.

“I have been really working on bureaucratic reforms, streamlining the process and automating the process,” he said.

With these reforms and initiatives, Luz said they expect improvements in the country’s competitiveness ranking in the Doing Business report which will be released by the World Bank this October.

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“But we will continue to work, we won’t stop. We want to automate and then go to another big improvement in the next year’s (report),” he noted.

Luz added that priority now is shifting attention to technology, education, innovation and environmental sustainability.

“Those are the next three to four areas where competitiveness will shift. If we don’t invest today in those areas, we will fall again,” he said.

Luz said the Council will also focus on infrastructure in a bid to improve the global competitiveness ratings of the country.

“We have made very minor improvements and we need to shift into higher gear. We improved in roads, but we have not improved, in fact we went down in airports; (and) marginal (improvements) on railroads and ports,” he said.

Moreover, while the Philippines has been good in governance and macroeconomic performance and management, this needs to be sustained, he added.

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