Press Release
February 16, 2010

'Entrepreneur warriors' key to economic future - Villar

Nacionalista Party (NP) standard-bearer Manny Villar said the country's hopes for high sustainable economic growth in the next decade or two will rest on the ability of the next administration to develop and nurture a "legion of entrepreneur warriors."

"Our country will need a legion of entrepreneur warriors, men and women who will be willing to take the future in their own hands and create economic growth and, subsequently, economic wealth," Villar said.

"And the task at hand for the next administration is to make sure that all available resources, assistance, expertise and support are made available to them - through microfinancing and other funding programs, through infrastructure support, and most of all through proper guidance and governance," he added.

Villar said he is ready to put in place an entrepreneur-friendly and entrepreneur-ready environment.

"Putting an economic model in place will spur entrepreneurial growth, create more jobs, and teach Filipinos the advantage of self-reliance," he said.

The NP standard-bearer said the biggest challenge for the next president of the Republic is how to eliminate poverty.

"We have to promote entrepreneurship in all aspects of society as a way out of poverty. We need to educate the youth in high school and college levels about the values and technical intricacies of entrepreneurial ventures," Villar explained.

At the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines (FOCAP) presidential debate Monday, World Bank Country Director Bert Hofman said the Philippines should muster high savings and investments if it wants to achieve growth of seven percent or more in the next quarter-century.

Hofman explained that the Philippine economy needs to grow faster if it wants to see its income levels become comparable to developed countries within a generation.

Villar said this kind of growth can only be achieved if the economic base is made more productive, from the production as well as consumption ends.

"Wealth generation is a direct result of more income opportunities which, in turn, is created by an entrepreneurial revolution. This model should be made the rule rather than the exception where we will have millions of Filipino entrepreneurs creating wealth for themselves and for others through jobs and other income-generating opportunities," he said.

He said this model should be replicated in far-flung areas through training and mentoring, backed by assistance programs from local and national governments and supported and sustained by the private sector through initiatives like public-private partnerships.

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