Maharlika Investment Fund and Challenging Episodes Ahead

It is more than ironic that the proponents of the Maharlika Investment Fund (MIF) who literally breezed through both houses of Congress in getting it passed are now struggling for words in trying to explain how the Fund could actually yield any additionality and help sustain the growth path of the Philippine economy.


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Are we playing midwife to an elephant in giving birth to a mouse?

We are all one in hoping for any strategic means to securing the momentum of consumption, investment, government spending and external trade so that in the process we could achieve the targeted economic growth of 6.0-7.0 percent for 2023 and 6.5-8.0 percent for 2024. But it looks like the MIF may not measure up.

Instead, it could very well be the sands in the wheels of economic growth, or outright stopper.

To begin with, we all know that we have neither surplus funds nor windfall profits from the sale of any public resource or assets. As the MIF relies on the same public money from which funding for infrastructure and social services would be sourced, the trade- off could only be anti-growth. The MIF would deprive the population of some funds for more productive food production, better education, improved medical facilities, more livable mass housing and broader digitalization of the economy today. These urgent concerns are normally included in the annual budget for both national and local government undertaking. To the extent of the diversion, national output could only decline. Indirectly, the other components of growth are bound to ease as well.