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Romero’s HB 331 seeks measures to accelerate recovery of economy

July 15, 2022 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 357 views

AMIDST the global economic crisis and man-made calamities, a lawmaker has sought an urgent act that would provide for additional mechanisms to accelerate the recovery and bolster the resiliency of the country’s economy.

In House Bill (HB) 331, 1-Pacman party-list Rep. Mikee Romero noted that the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and the ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia has also left the country’s economy in shambles and the Filipino people in dire straits.

Romero said that in 2020, the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) decreased by 9.5 percent, its worst plunge since the Philippine Statistics Authority started collecting data in 1946.

Romero added that it was also the first time since 1998 or a year after the Asian financial crisis that the Philippine GDP has contracted.

While the Philippine economy grew, albeit the historic decline in 2020, by 5.7 percent last year and was poised to rebound to pre-pandemic levels, the war between Ukraine and Russia has again hampered the recovery of the country’s economy, Romero said.

He noted that this May, the country’s inflation rate has increased to 5.4 percent, its fastest pace since November 2018.

Furthermore, the year-to-date adjustments of the domestic oil prices as of last June 21, stand at a net increase of P29.50 per liter for gasoline, P44.25 for diesel and P39.65 per liter for kerosene.

Romero also took cognizance of the June 27, 2022 report of the Department of Health (DoH) that the 4,634 new COVID-19 cases in the country from June 20 to 26 was notably higher than the June 13 to 19 new cases of 3,051.

“Considering our past experiences in dealing with pandemic surges, it is vital that the government put measures in place ahead of time and should have access to necessary funds in order to stop the further transmission of the virus and see to it that our economy will not again be affected by another surge,” Romero stressed.

Romero is urging his colleagues in Congress to immediately pass HB 331 for the government to be ready for any eventuality.