PH ranks 3rd happiest country in the world
THE Filipinos’ optimism on the prospects for 2018 can be attributed to the leadership of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Malacañang said on Tuesday, January 2.
While noting that Filipinos are already known for their resilient personalities, Palace Spokesperson Harry Roque said that the “changes” brought by the Duterte administration caused positive effects to the country’s ranking in the global happiness index.
Based on Gallup International’s 41st annual global year-end poll, the Philippines is the third happiest country in the world next to Fiji and Colombia. The Philippines’ net happiness score increased by five points from +79 in 2016 to +84 in 2017.
The survey also placed the Philippines as the fifth most optimistic about the country’s economic prospects and the ninth most hopeful for 2018 prospects.
Welcoming the poll results, Roque remarked the Philippines ranking high in the global happiness index did not come as surprise.
“We Filipinos are known as a happy, resilient people. We even manage to smile amid difficulties. It is therefore not surprising that we rank high in the global happiness index,” the Palace official said.
Citing the Philippines’ fast-growing economic growth, its record-high stock trading and the record-breaking investments, as well as the liberation of Marawi City in October, Roque said such changes were “reflected in the survey numbers. “
“Hope about the country’s economic prosperity and hope about the new year can be attributed to the palpable change our people have felt under the leadership of [Duterte],” he said.
“Our economy is one of the fastest growing in the region. The local stock market ended the last trading day of 2017 in an all time-high. Board of Investments-approved investments are record-breaking. The government decisively liberated Marawi,” Roque added.
In a report released last November, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) announced that the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) posted a “spectacular” growth of 6.9 percent for the period of July to September or the third quarter of 2017. This made the country the second fastest-growing economy in Asia next to Vietnam’s 7.46 percent, and ahead of China’s 6.8 percent.
The 2017 bellwether Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) also capped off in the positive record-high territory after closing last Friday at 8,558.42 points. PSEi racked up a total of 1,717.78 points for the full year of 2017 from the end-2016 level of 6840.64.
In October, the Duterte administration also declared Marawi City liberated in October after being seized by Maute terrorist group for about five months since May.
“Our people have, indeed, appreciated these changes as reflected in the survey numbers. The challenge, therefore, is for us in the government to sustain the pace and momentum of our economic growth and bring it to the greatest number of our people,” Roque said.