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Let’s have long term development plans!

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WE ARE supposed to have “Ambisyon 2040” and the “Medium Term Philippine Development Plan” (MTPDP) for 2023 to 2028 as two separate documents that were officially adapted the government.

As I understand it, “Ambisyon” is a road map, while MTPDP is a plan, even if I do not understand exactly what is the difference between the two.

Although “Ambisyon” does not seem to be a plan, it does seem to contain some “wishes” of what should happen or what could happen on or before 2040. That sounds good, but it seems that “Ambisyon” is really more of a “wish list”, with no one really accountable whether something happens or not.

As I see it, what is obviously missing is a real long term development plan that that goes beyond 2028, and even beyond 2040. In the absence of such a plan, we do not really know what are national targets are beyond those time frames.

I say that we must correct this discrepancy, and I also say that we must even plan for 100 years or more, perhaps up to 2128.

Every time that a new cabinet member is appointed, he or she comes up with his or her action programs as if his or her programs do not have existing programs at all. While his or her innovative spirit may be good for his or her department, it would be bad if he or she disregards the existing programs.

The fact is, all cabinet members are supposed to base their action programs on both “Ambisyon” and the MTPDP for the most part. 


Let’s build real Filipino cars

IF WE look back into our automotive history, we will remember that we already built two Filipino cars, namely the Sakbayan and the Tamaraw, but we never did recognize them as real Filipino cars because their engines were imported and foreign made.

Meanwhile, Malaysia proceeded to build their Proton cars using Mazda engines, and nobody complained when they presented these as “Malaysian” cars.

Fast forward to today, the trend is going towards electric vehicles, therefore gasoline and diesel engines are no longer needed to build new automobiles.

I remember that way back, some skeptics argued that we could not build Filipino cars because we cannot build the engines. We should have done what the Malaysians did – use foreign engines, but that is irrelevant now.

As Filipinos, we no longer have to prove that we could build good car and truck bodies, because we have done that already. Since by now, building engines is no longer a challenge, all we have to do now is to build the electric motors that would be suitable to fit into our locally made car and truck bodies.

Who should lead us into this noble venture? Should it be the Department of Science and Technology (DOST)? The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)? The Department of Transportation (DOTr)? Or perhaps the Department of Energy (DOE)?

As I see it, this can be a joint effort by all of these agencies, possibly even led by the Department of Finance (DOF) because all projects are challenged by financing.

Meanwhile, Toyota is reported to be reviving the Tamaraw, and that’s okay too.


Let’s bring back bottle deposits

FILIPINO inventor William Chua is suggesting that we bring back bottle deposits.

He suggested that idea to me after observing that the junk shops are not buying used glass and plastic bottles, and that is why they would eventually end up in dumpsites or landfills, despite many attempts to recycle them.

Many years ago, when most bottled drinks were still sold in two-way or returnable bottles, there was no problem recycling these bottles, because the junk shops were buying them, and the junk collector was also able to buy them from the households.

In other words, there was a market for recyclables at that time, and the action of recycling was well rewarded.

Today, many if not most of liquids are sold in one-way or non-returnable bottles. That caused a problem, because there was no longer a market for these bottles.

The problem was made worse when many products in bottles were already imported, and the importers were not interested in getting back their used bottles.

In the old days, used bottles could be bought by the piece, because the sizes were standard or uniform. Since that is no longer the case today, I now suggest that these used bottles should now be bought by the kilo, regardless of their size or manufacturer.

Some might think that this is an impractical idea, but practical or not, we should now think of new ways to reduce the volume of used containers that we are throwing away as garbage.|

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