Last week, PDu30 has announced something shocking again regarding Phl cutting ties with the US. Obviously, this went viral to the point of overshadowing other news of: ongoing relief operations of flood hit areas in northern Luzon; that unfortunate incident between police and protesters and many more. But what caught my attention is the various reactions about fear of losing favor or investments due to such an announcement as if we have declared war.
I’m not an expert about foreign policy but I think it’s about making a lot of friends rather than enemies; and I think a fair diplomatic relationship should be mutually beneficial and one-sided. Also, US companies is not the same as the US government. Yes, the US Government’s foreign policy CAN INFLUENCE but CANNOT DICTATE companies to immediately pull out from a country or lay-off workers (unless they broke a law or something). The overwhelming fact is that money (whether fortunately or unfortunately still) makes the world go round.
A similar policy announcement years ago by the US government to “bring back jobs to the US” by exerting pressure on US companies to hire Americans rather than rely on outsourcing. What has happened so far? Did the Philippines lose investments in BPO sector? Filipinos still seem to think that the bulk of BPO investments still come from the US, but it is actually quite diverse having some BPO firms serving Chinese, Japanese, Australian, and European clients.
On OFWs concerns, based on the remittance earnings vs. outsourcing earnings, outsourcing has already equaled if not exceeded the remittance earnings of OFWs and if the trend continues, this will eventually bring these OFWs back home to work and live with their families. And as a son of an OFW, I say that’s a good thing. And as for relatives who are already US citizens, that’s their choice.
Here are some facts as well; US manufacturing and even technology companies are still in China despite their so-called conflicts and difference in ideologies. Also, did you know that US Debt to China is at $1.185 trillion, as of August 2016. China’s position as America’s largest banker gives it leverage. If China does decide to sell part of its debt holdings, US interest rates will rise, which will slow economic growth and cause havoc to markets around the world (but the Philippines will be resilient to this).
Whether we like it or not, today, China has become the world's second-largest investor and biggest supplier of capital. But let us not forget, it’s not about USA vs. China, it’s all for the Philippines’ economic growth and by extension for the benefit of Filipinos.
Are we really afraid of losing our cheeseburgers and replacing it with siopao? In the event that McDonalds, Starbucks and the like companies leave, then that just means that we will have to #SupportLokal companies instead!
As for the issue of “changing of masters” or potential shift of Pinoy ideologies, that’s another story.
In less than a year, the senior citizen president and team has managed to gain in $24 billion worth of funding and investments for the Philippines cutting across various industries.
So Chill/Relax, it’s not the end of the Philippines, let’s wait and see how PDu30’s Art of War unfolds.
The writer is an RFP® - registered financial planner of RFP PH, Licensed Real Estate Broker and Director of CERTA, Inc., a family estate planning and investment advisory firm. To know more, please visit www.certa.ph
Originally Published in Philstar - The Freeman Newspaper last October 25, 2016.