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NEDA task force to formulate COVID-19 economic recovery plan

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) is creating a task group to formulate a plan towards the country’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The government needs the utmost cooperation of the public, the business sector, and civil society in restarting socioeconomic activities while preventing the spread of the virus, and mitigating the ill-effects of this pandemic,” Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary and NEDA chief Karl Kendrick Chua said.

The NEDA-led Task Group on Recovery is leading the formulation and monitoring of the government’s action towards recovery dubbed as the “Recharge PH” program.

The state planning agency said Recharge PH seeks to refocus, sharpen the design and accelerate the implementation of programs under the 2020 General Appropriations Act to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and help get the Philippine economy recover from the sharp decline in the second quarter of the year.

It said the Recharge PH builds on the work of the IATF Technical Working Group for Anticipatory and Forward Planning, also led by NEDA, which produced the We Recover as One report containing the initial assessment of the socioeconomic impact of COVID-19.

The report was submitted to the IATF in May.

“Three sub-task groups (sTGs) led by the Department of Trade and Industry (Economic Recovery), Department of Social Welfare and Development (Social Recovery), and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (Governance) have also been formed to assist government in the development of programs and projects that will contribute to the fight against COVID-19 and in the creation of innovative delivery mechanisms in consideration of the new normal,” according to the NEDA.

The sTGs, it said, will play a crucial role in the identification, monitoring, and evaluation of the programs and projects that will address and mitigate the impact of COVID-19.

Also, the sTGs will ensure the complementation and convergence of efforts of national government agencies and other Task Groups, and provide recommendations to the National Task Force on COVID-19, according to the NEDA.

“As we build a healthier and more resilient Philippines, there are three areas to focus on: expanding economic opportunities, improving the capability of Filipinos to adapt under the new normal, and ensuring people-centered, clean, technology-enabled, and responsive governance amid the pandemic,” Chua said.

The NEDA said the Task Force on Recovery also aims to strengthen consumer protection and develop policy interventions to address stigma, discrimination, and human rights violations towards health workers and people with COVID-19, including those who have recovered from the virus.

Recharge PH is to be implemented within 2020 and into 2021 and will be incorporated in the Updated Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022. — DVM, GMA News