Survey shows majority of Filipinos believe digitalization essential in job, business creation

Published December 7, 2021, 1:40 PM

by Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz


About 89 percent of Filipinos believe that the benefits of digital technology, such as strong cell phone signals, fast e-banking, and social media can greatly help create jobs and businesses, a Stratbase-commissioned Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey showed.

Citing the survey results, Stratbase ADRi president Dindo Manhit said that the government should strengthen its partnership with the private sector to achieve digital transformation and readiness.

The research group noted that the respondents from Metro Manila have shown their agreement “more overwhelmingly,” with 94 percent agreeing with the benefits of digitalization.

Stratbase did not say how many respondents were interviewed or when the survey was conducted.

The survey also found about 92 percent of Filipinos who believed that the government should build, upgrade and extensively expand the country’s digital infrastructure to improve speed, reliability and access to the internet nationwide.

Moreover, 82 percent said that the growth of the economy will be accelerated if the government will collaborate with the private sector.

Asked to identify issues that the private sector can address to boost the economy, the respondents cited creating jobs (65 percent), expanding livelihood (57 percent), helping uplift the lives of Filipinos out of poverty (46 percent), improving healthcare systems (30 percent), improving the quality of education (22 percent), and improving the quality and access of digital services (11 percent).

In a statement, Ayala Corporation chairman Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala said the only way to survive the pandemic is for the Philippines to go digital.

“We’re spending close to one billion dollars a year on a regular basis, year after year, building rebuilding the infrastructure and adding to it as much as needed,” he said.

“We realized tremendous number of products and services will have to ride on a digital infrastructure,” he added.

Former Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo said the pandemic has shown several advantages of the digital economy.

“The private sector can lead in the innovation of digital products and services that would allow us to increase the breadth and reach of markets in these digital times of pandemic, even in these difficult times,” Guinigundo said.

“At this point in time, it is imperative for the Philippines to recalibrate its growth trajectory by shifting to a more investment-driven growth and establishing a favorable environment for businesses to attract foreign investments, generate jobs, spur consumption, and address inequality. Despite the improvements seen in the Philippines’ major economic indicators in 2021, sustained economic growth is still uncertain,” Manhit said.