TAGBILARAN CITY, November 5 (PIA)—Of all Filipinos who served as the country’s president, why is it that Boholano president Carlos P. Garcia’s (CPG) image is not honored in any Philippine currency denomination?
Bohol Third District representative Arthur Yap has a theory, which could lend some truth to a conspiracy that undermined a plan to galvanize the Philippine economy against alien domination in business, trade, commerce and industry as CPG espoused.
Speaking before a jubilant crowd of Boholanos commemorating the 119th birth anniversary of Bohol’s most illustrious son, Yap, who admitted he had to do a crash course revealed that a Garcia policy that could have triggered a hate campaign against the Boholano nationalist, enough to bar his image from any local currency.
Garcia, who pushed for saw the post war Philippines as dominated by foreign businesses, dreamed of steering the country away from dependence on exported raw materials and imported goods.
Garcia, who is among the only three Visayans who made it to the presidency, dreamed of a modern industrial economy for the country when he pushed for the Filipino First policy, Yap explained.
The policy had three basic ingredients, asserted history authors who pored unto the Garcia state policies.
To provide increased government support for local or domestic industries, CPG imposed import controls on foreign manufactured goods because by limiting imports, domestic industry would be encouraged to supply products for Filipinos.
Secondly, by imposing foreign exchange controls, it restricts foreign businesses from taking money out of the country, and that would mean more accessible money available for Filipino businesses, Yap, who is a revered economist said.
Garcia also restricted foreign ownership to about 40% of a business, which kept the local resources largely available for the Filipinos.
During CPG time, Yap, who used to head the country’s agriculture department, said the foreign currency control kept the peso-dollar exchange rate at 1:2, which is still among the considered golden years of the Philippine economy.
That time, the Philippines ranked among the top three Asian economies, a far stellar achievement compared to the sagging economic rating which the country has now.
These reforms however proved to be a kindle that would ignite foreign investors in the country, which also forced a campaign to bring down the Garcia administration.
The Garcia reforms, Yap summed, influenced so much hate that could possibly vilify the man enough to have his image barred from appearing in any Philippine peso denomination, which now also feature non presidents like Josefa Llanes Escoda and the Boy Scouts. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)