‘America first’

January 24, 2017 at 14:30

EDITORIAL – ‘America first’

(The Philippine Star) – January 23, 2017 – 12:00am
Inline image 1

Don’t say he didn’t warn the world. From the moment Donald Trump launched his campaign for the presidency of the United States, he had made clear that he wanted American jobs to be given to Americans. Some dismissed it as campaign rhetoric that would change as the realities of governance set in.

Last week at his inaugural as the 45th US president, Trump made clear that this was not the case. “America first” was the battle cry in his inaugural speech, in which he promised to bring back to his country American jobs and wealth. Protectionism, he said, would lead to “great prosperity and strength” for the United States.

Malacañang under a similarly inward-looking President liked the speech. At least one Philippine business group was unfazed by the “America first” policy, preferring instead to focus on improved ties between Manila and Washington under Trump.

How the new American leader, who made his billions partly by doing business with the world, intends to stop his country’s investors from creating jobs overseas is still unclear. Trump can dangle incentives to lure back US investments. He can make it more expensive or difficult for his compatriots to bring their business activities overseas. But one man alone cannot roll back the tide of globalization. There are countries that are simply more attractive than others, providing the best opportunities and environment for certain businesses and economic activities.

Still, it is prudent to prepare for the worst. The Philippines is among the countries vulnerable to the negative impact of an “America first” policy. Americans are among the biggest investors in the Philippines’ booming business process outsourcing industry as well as manufacturing, providing meaningful employment to millions of Filipinos. BPOs could be among the first to be hit if Trump makes good on his inaugural vow to “bring back our jobs.”

Philippine exports can also be adversely affected by a “buy American, hire American” policy. The US is one of the top five trading partners of the Philippines. America is also a top trading partner of many other countries including China, which would be hit hard by an “America first” trade policy. A weak Chinese economy is bad news for the global economy. Every country must prepare for the uncertainties under President Trump.

Source: https://beta.philstar.com/opinion/2017/01/23/1664648/editorial-america-first

  All rights to the stock images are owned by Getty Images and its image partners and are protected by United States copyright laws, international treaty provisions and other applicable laws.
Getty Images and its image partners retain all rights and are available for purchase by visiting gettyimages website.

Arangkada Philippines: A Business Perspective — Move Twice As Fast | Joint Foreign Chambers of the Philippines