Delivered at the Philippine Stock Exchange Plaza,
Ayala Triangle, Makati City,
January 26, 2011
Good morning, everyone. It is my honor to represent President Benigno Aquino in this very auspicious occasion.
Let me first greet Senator Recto who is very much part of the success of the Philippines today being the senator behind the crucial revenue measure in 2005 without which I donâ€™t think will be the success weâ€™re having today. Iâ€™d like to thank Senator Recto for that work.
Iâ€™d also like to greet my fellow government workers, Secretary Carandang, Chairman Barin, our guests from abroad, the heads of the other exchanges, the partner of the Philippine Stock Exchange, the New York Stock Exchange, and to the rest of the members of the exchange, good morning.
President Aquino is charting a new future for our country- a future that will show the country to a higher economic growth plane where we can see a reduction in poverty. The past 47 quarters, the Philippines have had straight quarters of growth but we feel an increase in poverty. And thatâ€™s what weâ€™d like to change: to make sure that the future of the Philippines is a future for everyone. A future where business is done in daylight rather than in midnight and backroom deals; a future where level playing field and integrity and transparency is the order of the day. All of these weâ€™re trying to do amidst changing and new reality.
We need in our world right now where national boundaries are being â€¦ ; where islands of excellence is the order of the day wherever they are. In fact, in the Philippines, we have several of those islands whose excellence are connected to other global islands of excellence: the BPO industry, the semi conductor industry, the ship-building industry where, I understand, weâ€™re now the 4th largest ship building industry in the world. So, the challenge is to continue building islands of excellence in the country. And there are no hanging opportunities such as the tourism industry, the medical tourism, a sub-segment of that industry.
We live in a world that is in transition from the developed world into the emerging market-a world where an export strategy may no longer be enough; a strategy that may require activating domestic market and domestic demand. We live in a world where the dominance of one super economy is no longer the case. In fact, the Hong Kong Stock Exchange last year had an IPO of a hundred billion dollars which is more than twice that of the NYSE which I understand was only $40 billion. I was also told earlier that the biggest stock exchange now in terms of market capitalization is no longer the NYSE. It is now, I understand, the Brazil Stock Exchange. In fact, if you add the Hong Kong, the Shanghai and the ShenGen Stock Exchange, you have an exchange that is much bigger than the previous leader.
So again, these are new realities weâ€™re living with. In 2015, weâ€™re going to face a new reality of ASEAN integration where more and more of our industries are going to be one and we see the benefit of that as well as the challenges.
So this new future that the president is charting is amidst all these changes thatâ€™s going on around us as well as challenges from within us. We as a country have no choice but to win this new future for our youth, for our children. And the president plans to do this by addressing the three things that has held us back in the past: corruption, wrong policies, and the lack of infrastructure. These, the president commits to do with all his energy and to use his unprecedented political mandate to make sure that the next president who succeeds him will have no choice but to continue the fight to win this new future for the Philippines.
The Philippine Stock Exchange is an important part of that new future. You are one of the gatekeepers of capital to the Philippines and it is important that as gatekeeper, even though as a private entity, you are an operator of a public trust. It is important that you are aligned with a program to win this new future. This new technology that youâ€™ve acquired is a very big step towards creating that new future for PSE itself- a new future where trading is more transparent and disclosure is a global standard.
We are looking at you as a partner in progress. I understand of late that there are issues where we have differences of opinion but that is normal in a democracy and I appreciate that healthy debate. In fact, I told BIR Commissioner Kim Henares to sit down with the PSE so we can agree on a win-win formula to make sure that we both work towards this new future that President Aquino is trying to win for our country.
So again, Iâ€™d like to wish you more power, more success. Iâ€™d like you to breach more than 4,000 again. The last time I was here with President Aquino, we were at the same level, I think. So weâ€™re back where we began. But that is a temporary respite so we can reach higher levels.
Again, congratulations and good morning to everyone.