Drop in self-rated hunger ‘due to reopening of economy’

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    PALACE officials yesterday attributed the drop in self-rated hunger to the reopening of the economy and restoration of livelihood of many Filipinos.

    Cabinet Secretary and concurrent Task Force Hunger chairman Karlo Nograles and presidential spokesman Harry Roque welcomed the Social Weather Station (SWS) survey in November that found 4 million families or 16 percent who experienced hunger in the last three months, down from 7.6 million or 30.7 percent in September.

    “Malungkot pa rin po iyon dahil alam natin napakadami ng nagugutom pa pero ito nga po ay kalahati noong hunger rate na narehistro ng September 2020… ito po ay resulta ng paunti-unti nating pagbubukas ng ating ekonomiya (It is still sad because many are still hungry but this is almost half of the hunger rate that was registered in September 2020…this is a result of the gradual opening of the economy),” Roque said.

    Nograles said much has to be done to solve the hunger situation in the country but the “reopening of economy, restoration of livelihoods” is helping in the efforts to address hunger.

    He said the drop in rating indicates that government efforts to reopen the economy have helped provide families with the income necessary to provide for their basic needs, such as food.

    “We believe that survey data shows that as COVID-19 restrictions have eased and more of our countrymen have been able to return to work, the income streams of more families have been restored, thereby allowing family breadwinners to better provide for their families’ essentials, one of which is food,” he said.

    Nograles said the government is “cautiously optimistic” that industries that had been adversely affected by the pandemic––such as tourism, services, and transportation––would soon rebound and contribute to job creation and growth once the threat posed by the pandemic has been dealt with.