Strained Infrastructure in Philippines Erodes the Nation’s Growth Prospects

Photo by Credit Jes Aznar for The New York Times

Photo by Credit Jes Aznar for The New York Times

By Floyd Whaley/nytimes.com – Chris Ibasan travels only about five miles to work each day in one of Manila’s business districts, but it is often a grueling two-hour commute that gets him into the office late.

“My manager understands,” said Mr. Ibasan, a 24-year-old shipping company employee. “Everyone is late; even the managers are late for work.”

From Mr. Ibasan’s perspective, the problem is simple.

“There are too many people going to work, too many vehicles and not enough roads,” he said. “And taking the train is like lining up to see a movie star. You wait for hours.”

But from an economist’s perspective, the problem is even larger. The 2.2 million vehicles a day that grind away on Manila’s crumbling road system cost the country 876 billion pesos a year, or more than $20 billion, in lost productivity and wasted energy, according to a recent study by the Japan International Cooperation Agency. That is a serious drain on an economy of about $250 billion.

“Infrastructure in the Philippines — transport, energy and communication — is in a difficult state to say the least,” said Thierry Geiger, an economist with the World Economic Forum. “Year after year, when we ask business executives based in the country about the state of infrastructure, they say that it is improving. Yet it remains a major bottleneck.”

FULL STORY

Find more like this: Economy

  • The Harvey Weinsteins of the Philippines
  • Cebu Archbishop Emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal, 86
  • LOOK: New jeepneys under PUV modernization program
  • Malacañang suspends gov’t work, classes on Tuesday, October 17
  • Bitcoin use grows in Philippines, regulators flex muscle
  • Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

    Entertainment

  • Singer from Manila becomes 4th Filipino to enter ‘X Factor UK’
  • Concerts and the Pinoy audience
  • Pinoy producer Jhett Tolentino wins first Grammy
  • Tiny Filipino Taylor Swift Wannabe Wows the Internet With Perfect Performance
  • Jose Mari Chan and the song that made Filipino Christmas
  • MORE...

    Features

  • ‘Pinoy Aquaman’ swims 23 kilometers for peace in Mindanao
  • Former Pinoy dishwasher now owner of pizzeria in Italy
  • Women’s servitude blights Philippine society
  • Filipino hikers seen picking up litter praised widely by HK netizens
  • ‘Fotobam’ is Pinoy Word of the Year
  • MORE...

    Tourism

  • El Nido to impose daily visitor limits in 3 iconic tourist sites
  • Philippines starts building world’s first resort airport
  • aurumOne Makati Hotel – ‘Perfectly Simple’
  • Palawan is world’s top island; Boracay 12th
  • Philippines waives visa requirements for 7 more countries
  • MORE...

    Sports

  • 75-year-old Pinoy lola sets powerlifting record
  • ‘Pinoy Aquaman’ takes 10-km swim in Southern Leyte
  • Joshua Pacio guns to make history as youngest Pinoy MMA world champ
  • The Filipino divers everyone is making fun of are actually total class acts.
  • Rio 2016: Hidilyn Diaz ends Philippine Olympic medal drought with weightlifting silver
  • MORE...

    OFW News

  • The ‘bagong bayani’ of the Philippines
  • Which countries pay OFWs the highest?
  • Are you an OFW? Here are bad spending habits you need to break
  • Pinoy maids in Singapore get $50 salary raise
  • Strong demand seen for Pinoy workers in South Korea
  • MORE...

    Environment

  • Luzon has greatest concentration of unique mammals
  • Mindanao plants 3M trees in an hour, challenges world record
  • Fighting for sharks in the Philippines
  • DENR to crush seized elephant tusks, drops ceremonial burning
  • British billionaire promotes solar bulbs
  • MORE...

    Pinoy Places
    and Faces