President Rodrigo Duterte has stated he is prepared to sacrifice government assets for additional funds in fighting coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
“What is the endgame?’Pag maubos talaga ang pera, ipabili ko lahat ng propiedad ng gobyerno. Iyang Cultural Center, PICC, ‘yung lupa diyan, totoo, that’s the last. (What is the endgame? If there are no funds left, I will sell all government properties. The land in Cultural Center, PICC, that’s the last.) ‘Pag wala na akong makuha and we are about to sink and really sink, I will sell all the assets of government tapos itulong ko sa tao. (If I can’t get some [money] and we are about to sink and really sink, I will sell all the assets of government to aid the people.)” President Duterte said.
According to Department of Finance (DOF) Secretary Sonny Dominguez, COVID-19 and the Enhanced Community Quarantine in Luzon, which is government’s solution to the virus, have had an immense effect on the economy of the Philippines.
“Right now, tina-tap natin ‘yung mga kaibigan natin sa ADB at saka sa World Bank (we are tapping our friends in the ADB and World Bank) and we will probably be borrowing mga 5.6 billion US dollars from them. Kung kulang pa ito (If it is not enough), we will go to the commercial market. Pero okay naman ang credit rating natin, tumaas nga. BBB+ na tayo,(But our credit rating is okay, it actually increased. We are in BBB+) the highest ever. So we are confident ho na we have the financial capability to bridge this problem of the COVID has brought us.”
Meanwhile, President Duterte has urged COVID-19 survivors to cooperate in eradicating the virus by donating their plasma.
“That is the way of thanking God that you have survived. Magpakuha kayo kasi ‘yun ang dugo ninyo — ‘yung plasma ninyo ‘yun ang i-inject doon sa mga tinamaan. So ‘yung katawan mo makukuha niya ‘yon —‘yung dugo na kapatid mo na Pilipino, makukuha niya ‘yan. (Donate your blood because its plasma will be injected to the infected.)”
The President also reminded landlords and property lessors to cut their tenants more slack and time to settle their dues amid the COVID-19 crisis. – PCOO