We are the servants of the world
We are the hope of our nation
I am tomorrow’s people
I am the new generation
And we’ve got a song to sing to you
We’ve got a message to bring to you
Please let there be
For you and for me
A job tomorrow
And we all can agree
There’ll be sweet harmony
A job tomorrow
And we all will be there
Balikbayan boxes to share
Feeling so real and so true
Promise us tomorrow
And we’ll build a better world for you
This was the famous Coke Ad in the eighties. In the Philippine version it featured teen singer Lilet. I changed the lyrics just a bit to reflect the harsh reality facing the Philippine youth today. With limited and only low-paying jobs available in the country, millions of Filipinos have been forced to leave their country to feed their families and live a better life. Despite cosmetic improvements of attaining an investment grade credit rating, and GDP growth, the Philippine government has failed to implement a growth and development strategy that is inclusive and sustainable. Millions remain in hunger and poverty in this nation of 100 million people.
The economy is now on an “IV drip” of OFW remittances which total USD27 billion per year. These remittances form the backbone of domestic commerce via consumption links to retail, construction, etc.
Under the Aquino administration, the number of OFWs leaving the country increased due to chronic joblessness and low wages – from 2,500 daily before Aquino assumed office in 2009, 4,018 in 2010, to 6,092 daily by early 2015 (per Department of Labor and Employment data).