Business has high hopes in Marcos administration

Published June 30, 2022, 6:55 PM

by Bernie Cahiles-Magkilat

The Filipino business community has high hopes following the inauguration of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., describing his inaugural address as “very uplifting, (with) positive tone” and for his commitment on accountability.

The Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), which represents as the “Voice of Philippine Business”, cited how the new President reached out to all Filipinos to join and help him do the task even as he vowed that the “buck stops with me.”

“The speech was generally very uplifting, positive tone,” said PCCI President George B. Barcelon, who cited how many times the president mentioned in his speech that the dreams of Filipinos are also his own. “Ang pangarap nyo ay pangarap ko (Your dream is my dream),” said Marcos in Filipino.

If one has to grasp the whole message, Barcelon said, the new president actually vowed that his leadership has “no excuses, no reason, the buck stops with me.”

Barcelon described this phrase as something good as the new President has shown the “willingness” to put a stand.

The business community, however, found his speech wanting of specifics, especially on agriculture and manufacturing thrusts. He mentioned though the need to enhance local energy sources.

While Marcos was addressing the millions of Filipinos, (he won by a landslide with over 31 million votes), Barcelon said he left the international community and foreign investors hanging, except for a subliminal message that the past may not serve the country well under the current circumstances.

“His speech was for us Filipinos, but the rest of the world is also listening. So, I don’t know from their side if we are open for business already or not yet,” Barcelon added.

Businessman Francis Chua, founding Chairman of the International Chamber of. Commerce Philippines, cited the new President for being a “good orator, just like his father.”

“His speech is rich in substance and brings in much hope for our country,” said Chua, expressing hopes that the new leader could catapult the country to greater heights than what his father had accomplished.

Sergio Ortiz-Luis, Jr., president of the Employers Confederation of the Philippines, said the business community has high hopes.

“This is the first time I heard a president said there is no excuses and that the buck stops with him,” Ortiz-Luis noted.

As can be gleaned, Ortiz-Luis noted, some of his Cabinet Secretaries are non-political appointments, some even marched against him during the election campaign.

He also defended Marcos for his lack of specifics in his speech, saying this is not “State of the Nation Address” and his Cabinet is not even complete yet.

“I could say that his administration is not about power, not money, not revenge, but he is talking about leaving a good legacy. So, we have high hopes. His attitude is not distracted by critics, he is focused. I think, he will do well,” Ortiz-Luiz added.

ECOP Chairman Edgardo G. Lacson said it was a touching commitment when Marcos urged everyone to look ahead with the same dream and putting the past behind in the spirit of unity.

Lacson said the inauguration was a “watershed moment” for the country and Filipinos that will “define our journey towards peace, unity and prosperity in the next six years.”