Filipino women spend least on makeup-YouGov


Filipino women spend the least on makeup across the Asian region with nearly three quarters (74%) spending less than US$40 per quarter, according to a survey by YouGov.

The top three cosmetic products used by Filipino women are lipstick (87%), powder (75%) and eyebrow pencil (56%).

Residents of Hong Kong spend the most on cosmetics per quarter, with 29% spending at least USD130 on cosmetic per quarter. This is nearly three times the regional average, with just 11% of Asia-Pacific netizens spending more than US$130 per quarter.

Lipstick is not just popular but also highly-prized. When asked to pick just two cosmetic products to use, lipstick (52%) and liquid foundation (28%) are seen as the most indispensable among women polled in Asia Pacific region.

The popularity of products is far from universal. While mascara is the most popular product in Australia with three out of four Aussie women using it, it is used by less than half (45%) of women across the region.

However, the popularity of lipstick transcends borders in Asia. It is used by over three-quarters of women (77%) in APAC. It is also the most used product in all APAC countries except Australia.

Cosmetics are key to many people’s beauty regime, but how regularly they are used varies significantly across the Asia Pacific region.

Thais and Indonesians use cosmetics most often, with over half of Thai women (53%) and Indonesian women (52%) using cosmetics daily, well above the regional average of 38%.

By contrast, women in Australia (27%), Singapore (27%) and Hong Kong (28%) are least likely to use cosmetics daily. Fewer than one in five women (18%) never use cosmetics, suggesting cosmetics play an important role in many beauty regimes across the region.

Despite other differences, four out of five APAC residents are united in valuing quality over price. Australians are the thriftiest shoppers, with 34% of those polled opting for price over quality. Indonesians value quality the most, with 90% prioritising quality over price tag.
YouGov says consumer habits in cosmetics appear to be well-entrenched, with the majority (62%) of those polled saying that they buy from brands they trust over buying new products or those recommended by friends. This also increases with age, with 71% of those over 45 only buying from brands that they trust. However, 40% of Chinese residents appear to be more easily swayed and would buy products if their friends, relatives or colleagues had it. This is more than double the regional average of 19%.

The survey noted that skincare stands alongside many beauty regimes as an important part of maintaining a healthy complexion. Tastes converge when it comes to recognising the importance of hydrated skin; moisturizer is the most commonly used skincare product across the Asia Pacific, with 69% of those polled using it regularly.

“Yet popularity of skincare products varies significantly across age groups. It should hardly come as a surprise to learn that the generational divide is starkest in use of anti-ageing products, used by just 19% of 16-29 year old women but by over double that (43%) when it comes to women over 45. By contrast, whitening is more popular for 18-44 year old women (38%) than for women aged 45+ (26%).”

Philippines sees 6-7% economic growth in 2016


The Philippines, one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia, is confident of hitting the economic growth forecast of 6 to 7 percent in terms of gross domestic product (GDP) for 2016.

“With a 7 percent GDP growth in the first three quarters, we are sure to achieve, if not surpass, our target of 6 to 7 percent growth for the whole of 2016,” says Socio-economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia.

“Our economy’s continuing strong growth, decreasing poverty, lower unemployment rates, and new foreign investments this year are all good signs of things to come.”

“Together with a low inflation environment, sustained strong growth will pave the way for continued and faster poverty reduction. We see this momentum continuing in 2017 and hopefully in the years to come,” says Pernia.

Pernia stressed that this strong growth will have to be supported by sustained and deepened reforms – comprehensive tax reform program, investments in infrastructure, easing of restrictions on foreign investments, reduction of cost of doing business, and strengthening agro-industrial linkages.

“High economic growth will mean nothing if the welfare of the poor and marginalized is not improved. Along with increased investments in human capital to improve access to economic opportunities, we will continue to prioritize agricultural development within the broader framework of rural and regional development.”

The NEDA is currently drafting the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022, the first medium-term development plan to be anchored onAmBisyon Natin 2040, which envisions the Philippines as a prosperous, predominantly middle-class society where no one is poor; where our people will live long and healthy lives, be smart and innovative, and will live in a high-trust society.

“On the demand side, household consumption as well as investments in construction, public infrastructure and durable equipment drove economic growth, supported by low inflation, low interest rates, better labor market conditions and the steady growth in the remittances of our overseas Filipino workers.”

“On the supply side, the agriculture sector is starting to recover, finally breaking five consecutive quarters of decline. Growth in industry, particularly manufacturing, construction  and utilities, accelerated. The services sector likewise improved overall, with stronger expansion in trade, finance, real estate, and public administration.”

The Philippines is forecasting a GDP growth target in 2017 to between 6.5 and 7.5 percent.

Poverty in the Philippines is declining from 25.2 percent in 2012 to 21.6 percent in 2015, an indication that the government’s programs like the “Conditional Cash Transfer Program” are gaining traction, says Pernia.

“To accelerate poverty reduction, we will not cease to fight for the full implementation of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health (RPRH) Law to take advantage of the demographic window we are in and to make women productive members of the labor force. If this is fully implemented in the next five years, we can substantially curb poverty incidence to 13-15 percent by 2022, helping us achieve our poverty reduction target of 1.5 percent per annum.”

“The employment rate as of October 2016 is at 95.3 percent. This means that there 41.7 million Filipinos employed. Unemployment rate also declined to a record low of 4.7 percent. The growth of our economy is truly becoming more inclusive it appears, engaging more and more Filipinos to participate in the labor market.”

“Infrastructure is one of the government’s main thrusts. President Rodrigo Duterte has made clear that his administration will keep a deliberate focus on developing the regions through connective infrastructure. That is why we are ramping up public infrastructure spending next in 2017, allotting at least 5 percent of GDP to go to infrastructure projects, until 2022.”


Philippine employment rate rises to 95.3%, the highest in 10 years

downloadThe Philippine employment rate rose to 95.3 percent in October 2016 to reach 41.7 million Filipinos employed, the highest rate in 10 years.

Socio-economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia says the growth of the Philippine economy is becoming more inclusive as it engages more and more Filipinos participate in the labor market.

The services sector remained the top employment contributor with a share of 54.9 percent or 22.9 million of the total employed.

The industry sector, meanwhile, accounted for 17.2 percent or 7.2 million of the total employed in October 2016, driven largely by strong growth in manufacturing and construction.

The unemployment rate in the country dropped further to 4.7 percent, the lowest rate recorded in the past decade.

“With the decrease of unemployment in October 2016, our implied full-year unemployment rate will be 5.5 percent, exceeding the government target for 2016 of 6.5 to 6.7 percent,” said Pernia. he added.

The unemployment rate among the youth continued to decline in October 2016 at 11.6 percent, also a record low for all October rounds of the LFS since 2006. Likewise, the share of inactive youth—those who are neither studying nor employed—has consistently been declining in the past four years and has dropped to 20.5 percent in October 2016.

On the other hand, underemployment increased to 18.0 percent in October 2016, making the full-year 2016 underemployment rate of around 18.4 percent. Underemployment was prevalent among those working in private households and those employed in family business.

The number of stable wage and salary employment grew to 25.3 million or 60.8 percent of total employed persons in October 2016, the highest since 2006. Private establishments employ nearly 80 percent of these workers, while the public sector employs just 13 percent.

“The increase in stable wage and salary employment reflects our economy’s strength and the result of the government’s clamp down on unlawful contractualization,” said Pernia.

More than a third of those who are employed are still vulnerable that a large portion of those employed, especially in the agriculture sector, are susceptible to external shocks and economic downturns.

“We must accelerate the improvement of local infrastructure and facilitate the link of the sectors, primarily between the agriculture and industry sectors, to help raise the productivity of farmers and increase the value of their products,” Pernia said.

“The government must seek to strengthen linkages between academe, technical education institutions and industry to ensure quality and relevance of education and that students gain competencies that are essential to thrive in today’s changing world of work.”

“We must go beyond cramming information into our youth and foster the development of soft skills to enable the country’s youth to make informed career decisions and develop life skills necessary to succeed in a competitive workplace,” said Pernia.



NEDA stresses need to increase Philippine competitiveness


The Philippine National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) has stressed the need to raise the domestic industries’ competitiveness in the increasingly integrated global economy.

“We need to increase both public and private investments in research and development that would surely help in the exploration and development of new products, processes, and markets,” said Socio-economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia.

Domestic manufacturing output continued its rapid growth in October 2016 due to higher production of petroleum products, non-electrical machinery, and transport equipment.
“In order to support the manufacturing sector’s continued growth, the government efforts to improve the business climate must be sustained,” said Pernia.

In the Philippine Statistics Authority’s Monthly Integrated Survey of Selected Industries for October 2016, the Volume of Production Index (VoPI) grew by 8.4 percent, a marked improvement from the 1.5 percent growth recorded in October 2015.

The Value of Production Index (VaPI) also grew by 4.3 percent—a turnaround from the 6.2-percent decline in the same period last year.

Pernia expects the manufacturing sector to benefit from the industrial strategy of the Department of Trade and Industry that would focus on industries with potential to generate employment and encourage entrepreneurship.

“With the Duterte administration’s commitment to fast-track implementation of infrastructure projects and programs, construction-related manufactures will be a major contributor to the growth of the sector.”

“Better infrastructure in future will further stimulate the expansion of the manufacturing sector, as well as more easily connect producers to the value chain, and then to local and international markets.”

In consumer goods, the food subsector recorded double-digit growth in October, with 14.3 and 16.8 growth rates in volume and value of production, respectively. These are complete reversals from the -14.7 and -14.9 percent contraction last year.

For intermediate goods, the petroleum products subsector continued to strongly recover with growth rates of 37 percent and 29 percent in volume and value production, also sharp reversals from -21.7 and -35.1 growth rates in October 2015.

For capital goods, transport equipment subsector also posted 19.4-percent and 17.7-percent growth rates in volume and value of production, which are improvements from last year’s 6.3 and 7.5 growth rates.

Non-electrical machinery subsector also grew by 24.4 percent and 8.8 percent in volume and value of production, a turnaround from last year’s -2.6 and -1.4

UK minister cites Philippines as important partner for Great Britain in Asia-Pacific

Alok Sharma MPAlok Sharma, UK’s minister for Asia and the Pacific told delegates to the Royal Institution Global Conference on Good Governance in Manila that the Philippines is and will remain an important partner for the UK in the Asia-Pacific region and across a wide range of areas.

“We look forward to working with you here in the Philippines in this new era. This year marks 70 years of diplomatic relations between our two countries. However, the links between the United Kingdom and the Philippines go back far, far longer.”

“Those links include Dr Jose Rizal, one of your nation’s greatest heroes. He moved to London in 1888 and embraced British language, literature and values.”

“And for those of you keen on history, you may be interested to know that in Britain we commemorate the former residences of historic figures with a special blue porcelain plaque fixed on the outside of the residence.”

“One such plaque adorns No 37 Chalcot Crescent, in Primrose Hill in London. And it reads “Dr Jose Rizal, 1861-1896, Writer and national hero of the Philippines lived here.”

“Dr Rizal’s writings inspired many of those who led the Philippines independence movement. And I have no doubt that he would have been incredibly proud of the progress the Philippines has made since independence.”

“We in the UK have shared in that success through our trade, cultural, educational, scientific and people-to-people links.”

“We already have a strong trading relationship. The Philippines is forecast to grow well over 6% in the coming years. So it is no surprise that British investors and exporters continue to show a keen interest in your country.”

“Last year, the UK was the Philippines’ third largest investor. We have consistently been your largest EU investor. British investors include HSBC, Glaxo Smith Kline and Shell. British exports to the Philippines grew by 38% last year. UK goods and services are making a difference to high-value sectors, from energy to education and from Smart Cities to science.”

“And speaking of science, we have increased our Newton / Agham science and innovation partnerships in the Philippines. We have also boosted the number of Filipino Chevening scholars to 26 for this academic year. Both of these programmes aim to enhance expertise: boosting prosperity and promoting closer ties between our two countries.

“And this longstanding relationship means we can also be frank with each other and talk about our values: democratic accountability, human rights and the rule of law are vital.

“We will continue to hold these values at the core of our relationship with you, at the same time as we seek to engage on our economic and commercial interests.”


45% of Filipinos think immigrants have positive effect in the Philippines

Forty five percent of Filipinos believe that immigrants have a positive effect on the country and just 6% a negative one, according to YouGov’s international survey.

About 53 percent of Filipinos think that the Philippines should be able to meet its own needs without having to rely on imports from other countries.

In neighbouring Malaysia, just 16% have a positive image of immigrants and 39% a negative one, whilst in Indonesia a full 73% of people consider their impact to be neither positive nor negative.

The Philippines ranked second after Vietnam when asked about globalization as a force for good, while India is third followed by Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and UAE.

The survey ranked the Philippines fourth as the country which has most positive view on immigrants after UAE, India and Vietnam.  Australia is fifth followed by Sweden, US, Great Britain, Singapore, Saudi Arabia and Norway.

When asked which countries’ citizens are convinced they live in the best country in the world, YouGov survey ranked the Philippines in the seventh place after the US, India, Australia, UAE, Thailand and Saudi Arabia.

YouGov noted that the countries that are the biggest enthusiasts of globalisation are the ones that have benefitted most from it – the poorer nations of East and South East Asia. Here, belief that globalisation is a force for good reaches at least 70% in all countries, and as high as 91% in Vietnam.

Support is still strong in Europe with the exception of France with around half or more of people in the countries surveyed saying that globalisation has been a force for good.

There is, however, widespread acknowledgement that the rich have been the main beneficiaries of globalisation. In every single country, far more people agreed than disagreed that the wealthy have benefitted more from globalisation than ordinary citizens.

Whilst citizens across the world might be relatively warm to globalisation as a concept, delving deeper into its individual components reveals a much more mixed response.

Take interdependence, for instance. In a connected world where the manufacture of everyday products is so complex that the supply lines involved in creating them span the globe, it is inevitable that countries must trade with one another in order to meet their own needs.

Nevertheless, as many as 78% of Indonesians think that their country should be able to meet its own needs without having to rely on imports from other countries. So do 57% of Indians, 53% of Filipinos and 52% of French people.

The most striking revelation of the survey is the extent of French disillusionment with globalisation. In six of the survey’s 11 questions, French people displayed the most negative sentiment towards globalisation. They came near the bottom in several others.

This disillusionment extends to their view of their own country – as many as 21% of French people think that France is worse than most other countries, a figure more comparable to the developing nations on the survey rather than the developed nations.

The 4% of French people who think France is the worst country in the world is the joint-highest rate on the survey with Vietnam.  French people are also the least likely to say they live in the best country in the world.