Only the rich benefit from PHL’s boom – bishops

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MANILA, April 24, 2013— Only the rich are benefiting from the economic growth being claimed by the Aquino government, Catholic bishops said. 

Bishops Honesto Ongtioco of Cubao and Arturo Bastes of Sorsogon lauded the administration for the economic development but said it failed to dent poverty enough. 

“I’m not an economist but my personal assessment is poverty incidence is still the same though the economy has improved. Only people in upper bracket are benefiting,” Ongtioco said. 

According to Bastes, the country may have growth rate, but said the poor have not felt its effect. 

“I feel no improvement for our poor people. All the so called economic gains in the past six years benefited only the rich,” he said. 

Ongtioco added that the government must help raise the economic prospects and family incomes for those who benefit little from today’s economic growth. 

“I hope progress will trickle down to the poor,” he said. 

In its latest report, the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) said that the economic growth has not changed the lives of Filipinos living below the poverty line. 

NSCB secretary general Jose Ramon Albert said poverty incidence among population was estimated at 27.9 percent during the first semester of 2012.  

Comparing this with the 2006 and 2009 first semester figures estimated at 28.8 percent and 28.6 percent, respectively, poverty remained “practically unchanged”. (CBCPNews)

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