A study by World Bank says that Bayanihan laws help during lockdowns

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – AUGUST 08: On August 8, 2021, in Las Pinas, Metro Manila, the Philippines, people wait in line outside a vaccination station in hopes of receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. According to a recent assessment by the World Bank, the Bayanihan regulations that were used to implement the country’s $500 million loan assisted the Filipino people during lockdowns. (Image courtesy of Ezra Acayan/Getty Images) )

Millions of Filipinos in vulnerable households and companies were lifted out of poverty thanks to the government’s “Bayanihan” stimulus packages, but the World Bank, a Washington-based international lender, claimed that the sluggish distribution of the cash handout missed the poorest of the poor.

The World Bank stated in a report dated June 15 that social assistance measures may have been improved for better coverage and adequacy, targeting, and delivery if the Bayanihan packages had a significantly higher impact on reducing poverty.

The World Bank estimates that the country’s poverty rate would have reached 23.5 percent if no “ayuda” had been provided to the populace, but that rate was capped at 21.9 percent in 2020 thanks to the implementation of its $500 million emergency loan to the nation for its COVID-19 response through the Bayanihan 1 and 2.

However, it might have been lower at 20.3% if the government had mastered the fair and effective distribution of the cash award, which would have allowed it to focus on the most defenseless members of society.

According to the World Bank, the Bayanihan laws were able to reduce the nation’s poverty rate from 21.5 percent to 21.2 percent as opposed to 21.5 percent without monetary aid. The World Bank stated that the poverty rate could have been lower at 21.1 percent if the government had been able to effectively distribute the much-needed cash assistance.

“The SAP played a significant role in the predicted 1.6 percentage point (ppt) decrease in poverty incidence in 2020. Additionally, if transfers were effectively delivered to the intended beneficiaries, poverty might have decreased by an additional 1.6 percentage points, according to the World Bank.

The World Bank also stated that cash subsidies and other financial aid provided to small enterprises by the Department of Finance “was helpful in preventing job losses.”

News and creative writer Marvin Joseph Ang keeps up with changes in politics, democracy, and popular culture. He supports national democracy and a free press. His opinions are those of his own.

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