PH headed to recovery, Palace says, as country ranks second worst in COVID resiliency report

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 30) — The Philippines is on its way to economic recovery, the Palace said Wednesday, after a Bloomberg report listed the country as the second lowest out of 53 nations when it comes to bouncing back from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque acknowledged that the Philippines' economy took a nosedive due to the ongoing health crisis, but he said it is slowly improving.

"Ang ating economic team ay kampante na tayo ay unti-unting bumabangon at tuluyang bumabangon," he said during a vaccination event in Laguna. "Ang ating polisiya ngayon ay talagang ineensure na di lang mapapababa ang numero ng COVID, kung hindi, maiiwasan din ang pagkagutom."

[Translation: Our economic team is confident we are slowly and continuously improving. Our policy now is not only to ensure that COVID numbers go down, but to also prevent hunger.]

International news agency Bloomberg's Covid Resilience Ranking released on Monday looked into the COVID numbers, quality of life, and new element "Reopening Progress" as the world shifts to rolling out vaccination programs to put a stop to the pandemic.

The Philippines ranked 52nd out of the 53 largest economies with score of 45.3 — right before Argentina which got 37.

"India, the Philippines, and some Latin America countries rank lowest amid a perfect storm of variant-driven outbreaks, slow vaccination, and global isolation," the reportsaid.

The United States (76), New Zealand (73.7), Switzerland (72.9), and Israel (72.9) took the top spots on the list.

It scrutinized the nations' vaccination progress, severity of lockdowns, capacity of flights, and number of open travel routes where quarantine isn't necessary for fully vaccinated travelers.

The Philippines has logged 1.40 million COVID-19 cases as of Tuesday, with 24,557 deaths and over 1.33 million recoveries. The country breached the 10-million mark this week in vaccines administered, but only 2.52 million individuals are fully vaccinated out of a population of around 110 million.

The ban on travelers from India and six other countries with high cases of the Delta variant has been extended for weeks now. The entire country has been under varying degrees of lockdowns or community quarantine classifications since the start of the pandemic.