As reported in BusinessWorld, "Electronics may no longer be the Philippines’ top exported good and leading manufacturing industry by 2014, as foreign firms opt for cheaper labor elsewhere, University of Asia and the Pacific economist Bernardo M. Villegas told a business forum yesterday. The industry, Mr. Villegas said, has not moved up the value chain to operations such as design and research in time to make up for its eroding edge in labor costs. In its place, agriculture and processed food will likely become the country’s top exports in five to six years, alongside outsourced services, Mr. Villegas said."
As expected, the electronics sector reacted defensively to this. However, to anybody who has observed the complacent (some would say verging on the arrogant) attitude that the industry has fallen into for the past few years, Dr. Villegas' statements are but declarations of the obvious and the inevitable.
Interestingly, instead of taking note of the comments and using it as an opportunity to improve, the reaction of the industry heads were to say, essentially, that they're doing fine as it is.