President Rodrigo Roa Duterte talks to the people after holding a meeting with the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) core members at the Malacañang Golf (Malago) Clubhouse in Malacañang Park, Manila on November 17, 2020. TOTO LOZANO/ PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday admitted that the country’s economy was in “bad shape” as it shrunk by a record 9.5 percent in 2020.

But Duterte said that the Philippines was not alone in suffering the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and that other countries also had deteriorated economies.

“Ang ekonomiya natin, mga kababayan ko, is masama talaga. Biro mo naman, ilan taong walang trabaho? Ilang… The economy of the Philippines is really — is in bad shape,” he said in a televised address.

“But as I have said, it is not only the Philippines who suffers. We, in the world, is suffering with everybody,” he added.

The country’s gross domestic product plunged to (GDP) a record-low -8.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2020, resulting in a 9.5-percent GDP contraction for 2020.

Citing Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, the president said P2 billion was being lost daily due to the pandemic.

“According to the Secretary of Finance, araw-araw ngayon hanggang matapos itong Covid, araw-araw we are losing P2 billion na pera para sana ‘yon sa mga tao. The Filipino workers would have earned that money kung ang ekonomiya natin gumagalaw. Eh kaya nga hindi eh,” Duterte said.

Duterte said the government was trying its best to keep the country “afloat.”

“Kung may naiwan na maniwala sa amin, just keep faith with us. At the end of the day, you will see that everything has been done in accordance with the rule of law,” he added. John Ezekiel J. Hirro