Millions of Filipinos still poor despite foreign investments

March 23, 2023

by IBON Foundation

Some politicians claim that more FDI after charter change will reduce poverty. However, poverty has stayed high over the years of increasing FDI.

Annual FDI flows have been increasing and especially rapidly after 2010 to reach historic highs. In the past two decades, the number of poor Filipinos has stayed high, ranging between 17.7 million and 25.5 million.

Poverty continued to grow from 2003 to 2012 despite increasing foreign investment over that period. The decline in officially reported poverty between 2015 and 2018 was not to FDI but from greatly increased conditional cash transfers, which have since been cut.