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Recipe for economic growth in the Philippines: invest in infrastructure, education, and job creation

Rogier van den Brink's picture
The report says that a highly-educated, healthier and skilled workforce will enhance productivity.

Economic news coming from the Philippines is surprisingly positive, and this has not gone unnoticed in international circles, judging by the number of inquiries we—the World Bank economic team in Manila that I am now leading—are getting. Our GDP growth forecast for 2012 (included in the new Philippines Quarterly Update report) is a solid 4.6 percent, while the first quarter saw an even more respectable growth rate of 6.4 percent. Other good news: foreign direct investment doubled in the first quarter, exports were up by 18 percent, and two ratings agencies upgraded their outlook on the Philippines.

However, the economy faces two challenges going forward: it will need to defend itself against a global slowdown, and it will also need to create a more inclusive growth pattern—one that creates more and better jobs, because performance on job creation has not been part of the positive news coming from the Philippines for quite a while now.

Kapal tsunami: Wisata unik di Aceh

David Lawrence's picture

Available in English

Apa yang Anda lakukan kalau ada kapal seberat 2.600 ton mendarat di dekat rumah? Percaya atau tidak, ada beberapa orang yang bingung menjawab pertanyaan ini.

Tsunami yang menyapu Lautan Hindia pada 26 Desember 2004 tidak hanya membawa kerusakan dan korban jiwa. Kejadian tersebut juga menyapu PLTD Apung 1, kapal pembangkit listrik yang bersandar di Pelabuhan Ulee Lheue Banda Aceh, naik ke darat. Seharusnya kapal ini menghasilkan listrik untuk beberapa dekade lagi untuk mengurangi keterbatasan listrik di Indonesia.

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Tetapi kapal tersebut terangkat oleh tsunami hingga beberapa kilometer ke darat, tepat di tengah-tengah perumahan. Ketika saya pertama kali tiba di Banda Aceh pada tahun 2006, penduduk masih tinggal di beberapa rumah tepat di samping kapal itu. Sebuah jalan sementara dibuat mengelilingi benda besar tersebut. Di dekatnya ada kotak yang diletakkan di atas sebuah kursi, dengan tulisan tangan untuk meminta sumbangan bagi para korban tsunami. Pertanyaan yang ada di benak kami semua adalah: Apa yang akan mereka lakukan dengan sumbangan itu?

Women outvote men to build activity hall in the Solomons

David Potten's picture
The soon to be completed women's meeting hall will house various activities to help women develop themselves.

(Read Part 1 and Part 2 of this blog post)

While leaving leaving the LoLoMo eco-resort, the rain seemed to carefully time its return for our last leg of the trip. We were heading back towards Munda, and then turned to yet another island to visit the Buni Village Women’s Project.  This was project was in its first year of implementation. A large hall, together with rooms for guests, toilets (not standard in the rural Solomons), benches and a large blackboard was almost complete. The local carpenter was busy there in the building, planing wood for tables and benches.

Answers to more of your questions on rapidly growing cities

Dean Cira's picture

Cũng có ở Tiếng việt

Dean Cira

 (Urban specialist Dean Cira recently answered in a video 5 questions on rapidly growing cities that had been submitted to us by internet users. This post addresses a few additional questions).

 Manh Ha from Vietnam asked:  Urban planning currently focuses too much on having new buildings, which increases the population and construction density and reduces living environment in size. What planning model do you think Vietnam should follow?

 

There is a popular belief among planners and among Vietnamese generally that densities of the major urban centers of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City need to be reduced to improve the quality of life.  But if we look at the density of Hanoi, we actually see that by Asian standards, it is not particularly dense.

Trả lời thêm câu hỏi về thành phố phát triển nhanh chóng

Dean Cira's picture

 Also available in English

Dean Cira

 (Chuyên gia về đô thị Dean Cira trong một video mới đây đã trả lời 5 câu hỏi về các thành phố phát triển nhanh chóng do độc giả gửi về qua mạng internet. Trong bài viết này, ông Dean sẽ trả lời thêm một số câu hỏi nữa.)

Mạnh Hà từ Việt Nam hỏi: Đô thị hóa hiện nay tập trung quá nhiều vào xây dựng mới, làm tăng mật độ dân số và xây dựng và làm môi trường sống của người dân bị thu hẹp lại. Theo ông thì đâu là mô hình quy hoạch mà Việt Nam nên sử dụng?

 

 Có một niềm tin phổ biến trong các nhà quy hoạch và người Việt Nam nói chung là cần giảm tải mật độ của các trung tâm đô thị lớn ở Hà Nội và thành phố Hồ Chí Minh để cải thiện chất lượng cuộc sống. Nhưng thực sự là, nếu xét theo tiêu chuẩn Châu Á thì mật độ của Hà Nội không phải là quá dày đặc. 

Eco-resorts booming in idyllic Solomon Islands

David Potten's picture
The garden behind the LoLoMo Resort, where hundreds of flowering wild orchids thrive.

(Read Part 1 and Part 3 of this blog post)

We walked down through mud and coral as we headed back to our boat. This marked the end of the first part of our trip – visiting health posts in Temarae and Baeroko. Our boat now went back through the narrow channel leading towards Munda, and then turned again into a series of spectacular lagoons. Several simple tourist resorts had been built on the islands here and one of these was our next destination.

The rain stopped as we approached LoLoMo eco-resort. “Idyllic” is an over-used word in the Pacific, but this resort, with eight rooms built from local materials on stilts at the edge of a sheltered channel between two islands, with hundreds of fish easily visible in the clear emerald blue water, an extraordinary “garden” of hundreds of flowering wild orchids behind the huts, oaths into the thick forest for bird-watchers to explore  and a restaurant area where we were served a magnificent spread of lobster, shellfish and sea-fish really was something out of a tourist brochure's dream world. (and for me the kittens running around were yet another attraction).

A day in the life of the Solomons Rural Development Project

David Potten's picture

(Read Part 2 and Part 3 of this blog post)

The bow of the open aluminium boat jumped from wave to wave, cutting deeply into the white-topped wave crests and adding salt spray to the rain that was showering us constantly with wind-blown pin prick-like strikes. The helmsman then turned towards the shore, slowly bringing the boat into shallow water beside a small wooden pier, where we were able to climb gingerly ashore.

The helmsman was Wilson, Team Leader for the Solomon Islands Rural Development Project (RDP) in the Western Province, and he was accompanied by Lottie, the RDP Project Manager. RDP is a Solomon Islands government project supported by the World Bank, Australia, the European Union and the International Fund for Agricultural Development. Graham (my colleague on this mission) and I were in the Solomon Islands as part of an evaluation of the World Bank's work in the Pacific, funded by the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID). The RDP had been selected as a case study project for us to visit.

The tsunami ship: Offbeat tourism in Aceh, Indonesia

David Lawrence's picture
What do you do when a 2,600 ton ship ends up in your neighborhood? Believe it or not, there are people who’ve had to struggle with this question.

 

The tsunami that swept across the Indian Ocean on December 26, 2004, didn’t only leave behind wreckage and corpses. It also left behind the PLTD Apung 1, a power-generating barge that was docked in Banda Aceh’s Ulee Lheue port when the disaster struck.  It might have pumped out electricity for a few more decades, easing electricity shortages throughout Indonesia, before heading to the scrap heap.

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Instead, it was lifted by the tsunami and deposited several kilometers inland, smack in the middle of a residential neighborhood. When I first arrived in Banda Aceh in 2006, people were living in houses right next to it. A makeshift road worked its way around the massive obstacle. A box sat on a chair nearby, with a hand-written sign asking for donations for tsunami victims. The question we all had was: What on earth are they going to do with it?

Your questions answered: living in rapidly growing cities

Huong Lan Vu's picture

 Last week I asked you to send us your questions about the challenges faced by rapidly urbanizing countries. Please see below my video with urban specialist Dean Cira, where he addresses 5 of the many questions received. Dean will follow up soon with a blog post tackling some of your other questions and comments. Thanks!

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