Credit rating agency S&P Global Ratings is confident the Philippines will continue to expand and remain buoyant on the basis of economic policies that the Southeast Asian nation has adopted to ensure a sustainable future. S&P Asia Pacific Economist Vincent Conti bared this outlook on the Philippines during a webcast, saying GDP growth averaging 6.5 percent or higher over the next few years is “very easily achievable” for the Philippines. “And the reason for that is very favorable demographic trends that continue to benefit the Philippines, particularly providing a very mobile and effective labor force that has generated a lot of investments and consumption onshore,” said Conti. Conti added that the government’s economic policy “seems to be very stable” and is expected to have continuity. “A lot of positives from the economic policy as well. The ramping up of infra program is one of the relatively newer additions to the policy toolkit and that’s actually a positive in that it can generate even further potential growth farther into the future,” he said. This was also echoed by S&P Director for Financial Institution Ratings Ivan Tan. Tan said businesses are likewise confident with the policy environment in the country, particularly citing the tax reform program of the administration. “For instance, for the first time in quite a number of years, there are some degree of tax reforms being carried out in the Philippines,” said Tan. “This is expected to go on over the remaining years of the administration, which would serve to some extent stabilize the government’s revenue base and at the same time, hopefully provide more funds for infra which we think everyone agrees the Philippines does need,” he added. For S&P Senior Director for Sovereign Ratings and International Public Finance Kim Eng Tan, the second package of the tax reform program is “unlikely to directly affect” its rating for the country.