Sonny Africa

Sonny Africa is the executive director of IBON Foundation.

Universal Basic Income: To UBI or not to UBI

February 12, 2022

Free or affordable social services, decent jobs and incomes, affordable transport and utilities, and comfortable homes are much better indicators of beating poverty than programmed UBI cash transfers

Duterte giving public utilities to foreign capital

February 3, 2022

Congress recently ratified the bicameral version of the bill amending the Public Service Act and opening up domestic sectors to 100% ownership by foreign capital. This includes telecommunications, shipping, airports, airlines, railways, subways, expressways and tollways. Passing this proposed law will be one-step-forwards-two-steps-backwards for the country.

Debt benefits

January 22, 2022

The national government deficit and debt are historically large amounts and so easy to raise alarms about. But if current borrowing is used productively, this debt burden is actually not necessarily unmanageable.

BBB: Farce multiplier

January 19, 2022

The real question is what balance to strike between universal social protection and infrastructure. The disproportionate attention to urban-centric transport infrastructure of the Build Build Build program is clearly a problem.

Scar-crossed Labors

January 17, 2022

We will likely hear claims of strong economic performance, early recovery, and returning to a path of rapid and inclusive growth. But labor force and poverty figures for 2021 already show how any claims like that will just be bluster or, worse, blind to the daily experience of millions of Filipinos.

2020 Yearender: Economic lessons from Jose Rizal

December 30, 2020

The worst economic collapse in Philippine history and in Southeast Asia is mainly due to the government’s stumbling pandemic response and lackluster economic measures in 2020. If, again, there is more bluster than action in 2021 then real recovery will be much farther away than it should be.

Winds of democracy in the Philippines

November 30, 2020

Features/ Commentary | On a historical scale, there’s no doubt that the world is changing for the better. There’s too much creativity, energy and bravery committed to that for it to be otherwise.

Red Red Whine

November 18, 2020

FEATURES

Progressive ideas will be tolerated if spoken from armchairs or as rhetoric in speeches and policymaking. But red flags are raised when these ideas are connected to each other and, especially, when they’re borne by the organized power of politicized Filipinos in a mass movement for change.

IMF sees Vietnam overtaking PH: It’s not because of COVID

October 15, 2020

COMMENTARY

Our economic managers would do well to stop being blinded by their neoliberal dogma and start taking a more strategic view of national development. Without radical changes in our economic policies the Philippines will just keep getting left further behind.