By Carlos Manuel Eusoya
PHOTO: Monocle ; Esquire Philippines
Vice President Leni Robredo, who is aiming for the presidential seat, has been named the most “market-friendly” president by the Japan-based think tank Nomura Global Research. In an article entitled “Philippines: No holiday cheer”, Nomura explained that Robredo’s strategic post-COVID plans gained her the title.

Meanwhile, presidential candidate Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. ranks first in the recent Pulse Asia presidential poll held from December 6 to 11. 

The poll is the latest addition to the candidate’s long line of topped surveys.

Whose side would you believe: Pulse Asia’s statistical survey or Nomura’s comprehensive research and analysis?

Nomura’s five presidential criteria

Nomura screened the presidential and vice-presidential candidates according to five categories.

Robredo and Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan earned a perfect score of 5 in the first and second criteria of the research: national experience and business friendliness. They scored 4 in the remaining categories — continuity/good governance, infrastructure progress, and fiscal discipline.

Diwa C. Guinigundo, the Deputy Governor for the Monetary Stability Sector of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), supported the results of Nomura, citing that Leni’s “transparency and accountability” proved her ability to lead the nation.

“Contrary to the fake videos going around social media, Robredo has provided civil society a glimpse of what to expect in terms of her political platform, something that Nomura must have had the benefit of examining when their report was prepared,” Guinigundo added.

Marcos and her tandem Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte scored four in infrastructure progress, three in fiscal discipline and continuity/good governance, one in national experience, and zero in business friendliness.

Nomura also explained that Marcos’ victory will lead to a negative response, mainly due to his misinformation campaigns and disqualification cases.

“A Marcos victory will likely be viewed negatively owing to perceptions against him, in part because his candidacy is facing some petitions for disqualification on grounds of making false statements and a previous conviction of failing to file income tax returns,” the institute added in their monthly report.

With an average “market-friendliness” score between 4 to 5, Robredo and Pangilinan ranked first in the weighted average of all five categories. The Moreno-Ong tandem came in second place with an average score of 3. Lacson-Sotto is in third place, Marcos-Duterte is in fourth, and Pacquiao-Atienza placed last.
The think tank’s monthly report was written and reviewed by ASEAN economist Euben Paracuelles and analysts Rangga Cipta, Craig Chan, and Wee Choon Teo.

“Market-friendly” or “Filipino-friendly”?

As of writing, one politician has rejected the findings of the Japan-based think tank.

For Former Cavite Representative Gilbert Remulla, the next Philippine president should be favored by the Philippine people and not by the “market”.

“Anong pinagsasabi nitong ‘market friendly’? Kailangan ‘Filipino friendly’ at hindi para sa mga banyagang katulad ng nomura,” Remulla tweeted yesterday, Jan. 7.