PH on Path to Development from Agricultural to Services Economy – ADB

The Philippines is a good example of a country thatâ’s taking the development path from an agricultural economy to an economy that is supported by services, according to Asian Development Bank (ADB) country director for the Philippines Neeraj Jain, who added that the traditional path of development is from agriculture to industries and then to services.

The Philippines’ move from agricultural to services, Jain said, is happening amid the telecommunications revolution in the country. 

To move up to higher value-added activities – for the services and manufacturing industries, in particular – improved infrastructure would help. For one, improved infrastructure can help the country’s business process outsourcing industry develop more services aside from voice-based call centers. Jain added that the financial market in the Philippines needs to develop long-term instruments to help the government as it promotes investments in infrastructure. 

For public-private partnership (PPP) projects, Jain said that loans with longer terms have to be made available. He added that longer tenors can give a bigger boost to infrastructure projects. 

Last month, the ADB announced funding support for the PPP initiative, in hopes of helping sustain the “positive reform momentum.” The project development and monitoring facility (PDMF), which is administered by the ADB, has current funding that is estimated to be capable of supporting at least 12 PPP projects which would be implemented or ready by 2016. This is more than double the government’s five- project
target set for completion by the end of next year.