More on buy local

Further comment on the “Buy Filipino” movement: yes it’s illegal under the WTO if it’s a government program, legal if it’s a private sector driven program. However, whether a Buy Filipino movement is effective is another matter. Note that the local ceramics industry has around 50% local market share, glass has around 85% local market share, and soap raw materials (such as STPP) has around 90% local market share. Steel probably has the same numbers. This means that a Buy Filipino movement isn’t going to be that helpful as we’re already doing it.

And noting the the announcement of Gilbert Remulla that the NP stand is: "Government is the single biggest spender. If all national and local agencies can consciously support the campaign by giving preference to locally produced goods and services, then this would be a good start," it is to be reiterated that government procurement of local products (which is legal under the WTO) is already being done since the time of President Quezon through the Flag Law.

The only way our domestic industries can thrive is to be more competitive in the export market (as our domestic market is simply too small to support our industries) and they can only be competitive if they have an educated work force and their R&D spending increases (the latter of which can be done if they have an educated management). Both of which, obviously, isn't being done, with exports down again and even the status of Manila as a livable area is being questioned, which obviously isn't good if you're attracting investors.