Press Release
July 27, 2011


"We've fallen behind in terms of education, industry, research, even tourism, it's about time we catch up with our ASEAN neighbors," said Senator Edgardo J. Angara today, urging the government to redouble efforts to improve the country's competitiveness.

"For example, Singapore rapidly rose as one of Southeast Asia's newly industrialized economies. One of its major strategies was to invest heavily in education. Its education program is one of the most comprehensive and fully integrated in the world," he explained.

Angara also compared our country's tourism industry to that of Malaysia's, noting the latter's intense media campaign that reach out to other continents.

"Malaysia's tourism campaign now is so focused, and so catchy that people all over the world remember it. We should strive for an equally memorable program because we have so much to offer, both in ecotourism and cultural tourism. We could attract not just the international travelers, but also our fellow Filipinos willing to explore other parts of the country," said Angara.

Lastly Angara emphasized the rapid growth of Thailand over the past decade.

"Just 30 years ago Thailand was our country's equal in almost all aspects--we even had the same GDP. However, due to strong, single minded leadership and proper public investment, they were able to pull ahead.

"The Philippines is now among the bottom three in terms of progress and country development, along with Laos and Cambodia. We must use this knowledge as the catalyst for action so that the new administration can steer the nation toward the right direction," said Angara.

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