Conversation with Indian colleague: Why Philippines is still poor?

I got bored and lethargic one lazy afternoon last week, my boss was on travel and there weren’t much to do on my desk so I went to the pantry in our office and decided to make my own cup of tea. Few minutes later one Indian colleague, Mohammed, came in the pantry and started to make his own tea as well. He just came back from vacation so I welcome him back with a strong grip hand shake.

I asked him how he was and answered he was just fine but too tired and told me that he may have to leave Saudi Arabia next year if he received a very good bonus from his boss.

He is actually the executive secretary of the CEO. He is 50-ish years old with 2 sons and 1 daughter who are still studying. That’s why I was a little surprised that he plans to go home to India which he told me once before that he still has a college student he is supporting.

“So how about your college student and you other children who are still in school?” I asked.

“I have already looked a business opportunity in India, but the problem with I see is on how to handle consumers in India as the local Indians are more experts in dealing with them compared to me who’s been living in GCC for many years already! But I know that wouldn’t be too hard!” says Mohammed.

I told him with my observation about the clothing retail stores here in Saudi Arabia like Centerpoint and Splash that the items are trendy, fashionable with good quality apparels are mostly from India. Then I disclosed to him one of my plans in the future and the idea of starting a business in the Philippines where I would sell imported clothes and apparels from other counties in Asia including India.

I wasn’t prepared with his question when he asked me, “Why should you look in other countries and why not Philippines?”

I didn’t know what to answer but I said it anyway, “I don’t know, maybe I am not sure about the quality?”

“Are there not any clothing manufacturers in the Philippines?” he asked.

“I am sure there are!” I answered. “I’ll make sure to include them in my list once I’ll look for manufacturer.”

“By the way, what happened to the Philippines? Why Philippines still poor?” another question from Mohammed that I am not prepared to answer.

“Because of its political system, lots of government officials in the Philippines are corrupt you know?” I answered.

“Will, India too but we are progressing. You have all the resources in the Philippines, natural and human resources, cheap labor, you know, plenty of companies in America and Europe love to build factories Asia because of its cheap labor. You also have the support of the America but why the Philippines still poor? Millions of Filipinos around the world are sending money to the Philippines but why Philippines still poor?” Mohammed asked.

Our Bangladeshi cleaner came in the pantry to get the garbage.

“Bangladesh is now progressing also because India is helping them and they are now growing compared to Philippines!” another painful statement from Mohammed.

I would like to argue what he said, but thinking deeply about it, it seems his statement made sense to me.

He told me that the only reason why The Philippines is still poor is mainly because of the country’s common people.

“I have few reasons why I think The Philippines is still poor and these are just my observation with you Filipinos. After 26 years of living here in the Kingdom, I have met different kinds of Filipinos and with that; I can tell why Philippines is still poor.”

Here’s what he told me.

Filipinos don’t save. According to him, he has many Filipino friends, they’re really good and really nice people but one bad thing with Filipinos is that, they don’t save. He wonders why his Filipino friends always run out of money a week before their salary and every time he asks where his money is, his Filipino friends will answer him that all the money were sent to the Philippines and that are still not enough for their family and that leads to his second reason.

Filipinos have terrible spending habit. Mohammed gave me an example in relation to this. He told me that if Mohammed an Indian guy and a Filipino guy will be standing and surveying in one store or stall that is selling jewelry, and if the sales man is an Indian guy, he is pretty sure that the Indian salesman’s attention will be given to the Filipino guy. Why? Because that Filipino guy will buy if he really wants it no matter how much the cost. But for him, Mohammed, he has to bargain and stretched the prize the lowest possible before he buys it. He also said that Filipino workers abroad should teach their family back in the Philippines on how to spend their money. All the money sent to the Philippines must not be spend and should save at least part of it. This will somehow help the economy and the family at the same time.

Filipinos are mostly eaten by pride. Most of the Filipinos as he observed are always concern with social status. This is as if Filipinos cannot live without it. Whenever there is something or material thing that could give them a sense of pride, they mostly do whatever it takes just to possess them and this would lead again to a terrible spending habit.

Filipinos are literate and educated but not clever nor wise. According to Mohammed, he knows numerous of Filipino professionals. Engineers, architects, nurses etc, but majorities of them aren’t smart enough on how to manage their own finances. He even compared these Filipino professionals to our Bangladeshi cleaner who, in four years of staying here in the Kingdom has been able to build his four-bedroom house in Bangladesh with earnings of 350 Saudi Riyals only.

While I was listening to him laying down his reasons why the Philippines is still poor, in his own perspective, it only boils down to one, and that is the attitude of the Filipinos towards money. Mohammed’s assessment and observation towards us Filipinos are very painful but who could say that he is wrong?

These are the things that he saw in us within his 26 years of his daily encounter with us. It always upsets us every time we hear unpleasant opinions from other nationalities, but do we really have to be upset? As the cliché phrase says, “reality bites” and indeed it is painful because they’re all true. Let us take this a challenge, let us prove that Mohammed, my Indian colleague is wrong with his observation.

PS: Fyi. The blog post above was published on July 17, 2011 on my blog –

About thefrugalofw

I am an unconventional OFW (Overseas Filipino Worker) with big dreams who lives simply. I am very comfortable celebrating my own individuality. I usually have an insatiable hunger for learning. I am a Christian who has a passion to inspire other OFWs through my way of living. A frugal individual who wishes to be wealthy to help others. My interest in personal finance took place since last year 2010. I would like to share all the lessons I learned from experiences. Since then, I made a choice to live a life better for less and I discover the magic of simplicity. It gave me more comfort since then. The aim of my blog is to spread information about business and investment opportunities in the Philippines, share practical ways and tips on how to manage money wisely and how to live life to the fullest in the most easy and inexpensive way. You may visit me on my website and follow me on twitter below. Salamat po.

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  • Mar Lauron

    World Bank report ranks India ahead of Japan and after US and China on basis of purchasing power parity. India emerged as the world’s third-largest economy in 2011 from being the 10th largest in 2005 in terms of purchasing power parity (PPP), according to a new study by the world’s leading statistical agencies.

    India becomes world’s third-largest economy – Al Jazeera…/india-becomes-world-third-largest-economy-2014...

  • Jack
  • Rafa

    In response to the query raised by one of the commenters: I think what the Indian guy meant was how come the typical MIDDLE CLASS Filipino is still poor. Not poor poor, but you know. Poor middle class, and we remain in that space as we never learn or progress in our financial lives, no matter how much our salaries have been upgraded or what which country we expatriate ourselves to. We have to admit, the Indian guy makes a fair point. Indian expats who leave the middle east for good go home to improved conditions in their newly built houses and newly erected businesses and what-not. Filipinos live well in the middle east during their expat years, then go home for good to live less charmed lives as balikbayans, always running out of money before the month ends. Been there, done that with my family. I’m seeing the same thing with my other relatives. Few pinoys manage to get out of the poor-middle class rut. Sure, as they say, it’s more fun in the PH, but perennial poverty is not fun. Financially speaking, we have to grow up and out of this rut. India might still have lots of poor folks but their middle class sure is improving. Let’s challenge ourselves to do the same.

  • Ed

    Bangladesh guy earning 350 SR is now owning a 4 bedroom house after 4 years of work in the Kingdom (350 SR x 10.8 Pesos x 12 months x 4 years = 181,440.00 Pesos)? Can you do the same in Philippines?

    And if it is true, then what about the Indian Guy who have stayed for 26 years, did he built a castle. So untrue, so lame.

    Philippines is poor because we are spending too much? Lol

  • I agree with all points. If I may add:

    Filipinos are not accountable – they blame others for the rut they’re in.

    • Ed

      Absent for 35 years and when Mommy dear returned back all she can say is “Everything is worst” Mama mia, I can’t believe my eyes … so untrue

  • Alvin

    I agree to what the Indian man said however I disagree to what he said that the Philippines doesn’t progress. Yes, India’s economy is emerging (the Philippines too) and belongs to the BRIC but much of their population still lives in poverty. They have their best science schools and own car manufacturing industry but still many people are poor. Believe me, once you go to India and see what they have, you would still say the it’s still better to live in the Philippines. In terms of BPO, we already surpassed India although they say they are better English speakers. Lastly, the Philippines is not that poor. It has a middle income economy, and one of the NICs and Next 11. Apart from that, the country has billions of deposits in Swiss and other banks around the world. I just don’t want to elaborate more about the Philippine gold but you can make your own research about it.

    • Steven Macon

      Alvin, LOL!…I don’t know about Philippine gold but what I do know is that the average citizen in Cebu City, Manila, or Talisay City is far removed from owning or even SEEING any gold! LOL! I guess we should define whether or not we are talking about the total GDP or whatever of the COUNTRY or we are talking about the lives of the average citizens of India and the Philippines. I have no doubt that the people of India are poorer, generally speaking, that Filipinos but I question how much actual “progress” the Philippines is making. My wife, a Filipina, was absent from the Philippines for 35 years and when she returned…with me…she tells me that everything…EVERYTHING now…is worse. I don’t know. I was not here. What I do know is that the streets of the cities are filthy and that there are still a lot of poor, really poor..people in the Philippines.

      • Alvin

        Jason, as you can see, though the Philippines has been independent from Spain and America for about 3 hundred years, my country is not completely free from the dictates of the western governments and banking elites such as World Bank and IMF. Those banking elites together with the Fed are the biggest fraud ever which is also the reason why US is going down the drain.

        After World War 2, America stole much of the Philippine gold and that’s what that country does which is to attack and destroy countries then loot their resources such as gold and oil. I saw the US military shipping Saddam’s gold back to US and perhaps Qaddafi’s too.

        Many of the terrorist attacks in the country are actually carefully engineered by the CIA and lately it was found that US is quietly supporting terrorists in Mindanao. You see how America is such a traitor?

        I suggest you make a deep research on why the US and EU is declining and why the Philippines is the center of divine plan so that you will know what the future holds for the this country and the world.

        • Steven Macon

          Alvin, I think you have been watching too many “conspiracy” movies on television. LOL! Next you will say that the Sept. 11, 2001 attack on the Pentagon and the Twin Towers in New York City was a CIA plot! The USA is no angel, don’t get me wrong, but don’t go stretching the truth. The Philippines is still poor because of GREED! Look at the politicians in Manila, for goodness sake…and what about Mrs. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo? She is under “house arrest” in a hospital right now because of looting the nation’s treasury! Sheesh. Filipinos are greedy and cannot look ahead to the future and that is why the Philippines is still poor.

          • Steve, not all Pilipinos are greedy. Don’t forget, your wife is Pilipina. Is she greedy too? I am so sorry but I have to ask that question. It is really upsetting to read your comment. All Pilipino here already knows what is going on in the country but to hear or read comment like this… specially an American who choice to live in the country because of a certain reason and have decency to say that Pilipinos are greedy I don’t think that you ought to live in the Philippines if you despite us, Pilipino that much. I think you are being abusive to all of us. NOT ALL PILPINOS ARE GREEDY. I am beginning to agree to few readers here that you are bored and looking for something to do and what better thing to do except to continue your abusive comment about all Pilipinos. Why is it that you bringing up the same issue over and over again? I sense that you are not really a nice person after all. You keep bringing the same issue like there is no ending. Please don’t forget that there are good and bad everywhere. For you to hate all Pilipinos is no excuse at all. Do you hate your wife too? Before you write a blog, think carefully first, and ask yourself if it is okay to stereotype all Pilipinos. We, good Pilipinos has each own feeling and it hurt reading your comment here like you could care less if all pilipinos get upset! You send out your message already and there is no point on keep rubbing it to us all over and over again. I hope my friend you learn to enjoy and stop sending the same message. We get it already!

            • mindflex

              Wag nyo na patulan si Den

            • Steven Macon

              Marita, take a tranquilizer. Sigh….if you are really that thin-skinned, you probably have no business on ANY blog, in my opinion. However, since you bring up a valid point, let me clarify. I am speaking of the MAJORITY OF FILIPINOS…not ALL…when I say Filipios are greedy. If you want to generalize and say, “Americans are fat,”, I will understand you are talking about the majority and I will agree with you! I am pretty sure you do not want me to go back thru all my unpleasant experiences here with GREEDY Filipinos. The point is…MANY are greedy, OK? Street vendors that cheat the foreigners…pickpockets during SINULOG…etc. By the way…we have a FEW Filipino friends here that actually approach what I would call, “normal”, if that is any consolation to you. Note that I said a FEW and…most of those have either been to the USA and lived there awhile or have been successful at their jobs or careers. Hope that helps.

              • you really are a Piece of metal. It is not worth arguing with someone has mentality like you. Now I can see how those Pilipinos maybe enjoying being rude. Continue being miserable Sir.

      • Alvin

        Steven, streets in India are dirtier and more stinking.

        • Carol

          yeah, and they have a big toilet crisis, open defecate on the streets and their river

          • Steven Macon

            Speaking of that…wife and I came home from shopping yesterday about 5 P.M. As we rounded the corner from the SRP Highway to turn on to the residential street to our place…suddenly…VERY suddenly…a tricycle driver left his vehicle and darted across the road in front of my car. I had to stomp on the brake to keep from hitting the guy. He unzipped his pants and started urinating against a utility pole right in front of us! No manners…no shame whatsoever. Say it with me everyone…”Welcome to the Philippines!”

      • Jess Reyes

        Ask your wife what has she done to make life better in the Phil or she’s one of those Filipinas who married a foreigner thinking that they will give them a better life since they don’t know how to do it themselves or they were from poor families themselves.You may be lucky you were born probably in a western country but even then if you’re just a minimum wage or middle income earner in your country then I can tell what life you have in your country, as normal as…;)

    • Alvin

      Many poor Filipinos eat leftovers from garbage but they don’t eat human waste. So if you’re saying that Indians knows more how to make money, why there are poor Indians who eat their own waste? And why middle class Indians prefer to do lending business in the Philippines? This shows that Indians trust Filipinos who do business that’s why they lend them capital. Again the article is true but not all Filipinos are like that.

      • Steven Macon

        I have a total of four Filipinos that I have loaned a total of 12,000 pesos to and to date…have not been repaid one single centavo. Just sayin’….

  • aeneid

    @ ronnie_jeddah kung pupwede huwag ka na lang mag comment at pinakikita mo lang ang pagka ignorante mo sa discussion na ito.. your opinion is valid pero for you to berate a foreigner who perhaps cannot speak our language is wrong. Alam mo ba na mas valued ang kanilang comment at wala silang vested interested sa bansa natin. So to be able to say things that a typical pinoy like you would just deny and quick to shift the blame and responsibility to others IS GREAT. they have an impartial view of the state of affairs and/or opinion as to why the philippines is still poor. sana ilawak mo ang iyong pagiisip at huwag maging narrow minded and simpleton.

  • komentarista

    dapat nitanong mo din sa indian na kaibigan mo kung bakit napakaover populated ng bansa nila, bakit andaming manyak na pana, at bakit kala mo matatalino sila pero sa totoo lang eh wla nman silang common sense pero pag kaharap na ang boss sila na ang bida?

    • Steven Macon

      People in India know how to MAKE money. Filipinos only know how to SPEND money.

      • eve1969ph

        People should learn to take criticisms positively and or at least do something to prove it otherwise hindi yung defensive na agad reaction (which just shows how affected one is..(natamaan kasi?) ) I agree with Steve here and there is some truth in what the Indian guy said. He was merely stating facts or just expressing his own personal views. Tutuo naman, status-seeking tayo eh. For some though, wala na sa lugar kasi kahit itlog o tuyo na lang inuulam or baon-baon na sa utang sa tindahan and kung saan pa, basta designer ang gamit at latest ang gadgets ok lang.

        Marami mahirap na nga nagaanak pa ng ilang dosena probably hoping that when the offsprings are old enough mapapakinabangan na. Yung iba naman na pinalad na makatapos after gapangin ng magulang ang edukasyon nila, eh ganun din di pa rin ginamit pinag aralan, kung hindi mag asawa ng mahirap AT tamad (pa) lang din, nagbuntis naman ng maaga therefore producing another generation of “mahihirap” ..worst still, yung asawa nila hindi pa sila allowed mag work. Hindi naman kaawa-awa mashado mga mahihirap eh kasi may ibang mahihirap na makikita mo na nagpupursige talaga umangat..There are those who are contented with the way things are, some who spend their time getting drunk on cheap alcohols and blaming everything that happens to their lives kay GOD or the government. Kung tutuusin, dapat ndi sila mareklamo masyado kasi hindi naman sila nagbabayad taxes eh. May mga tao na who fare well naman in their provinces, dunno why they have to go to the city pa. We make our own destinies. IF we believe that we are POOR and we are far beyond HOPE THEN we WILL be FOREVER POOR but we can choose to rise up against poverty. I know a lot of people who have done that.

        As for those who have enough money, try investing in small businesses..there is risk but at least U are trying to make your money work for you rather than YOU work for money. GET OUT OF THE RAT RACE! Adapt Robert Kiyosaki’s views. How many of our professionals work for employers na wala naman pinag aralan (but have financial savvy?) So on this note I would like to point out that it does not matter what school U graduated in, or how high your education level is..One may have the finest tools but if one has no idea how to use it, it’s pretty pointless, don’t U think? wandering off the topic.. 😀 (got carried away..peace, guys)

        • aeneid

          well said eve.. couldnt have put it any better.. 🙂

        • franko

          agree! 🙂

      • Alvin

        Tama naman sinasabi ng Indian pero bad side lang ng mga Pilipino ang sinasabi nila dito maniwala kayo mas magaan ang buhay sa Pilipinas kumpara sa India kahit sabihin pa nila na economy nila emerging marami parin sa kanila mahirap. kaya nga nandito sila nagnenegosyo dahil mag naniniwala sila na mas mabilis sila kikita. Nagpapautang sila sa mga nagnenegosyo na Pilipino ibig sabihin likas din sa Pilipino ang magnegosyo kahit sarisari store pa yan or isang puesto sa palengke. Napakaraming tao sa India na mahirap pero bakit dito pa napili nila magpautang nagpaaputang? Ibig sabin mas mabilis iikot ang pera nila dito kaysa sa bansa nila. Diba got the logic? Dito ang mga walang wala kumakain ng pagpag sa basurahan pero doon kahit dumi ng tao kinakain nila hanapin nyo ung video sa youtube.

  • darkvader

    Isa lng po ang hindi ko mapaniwalaan dun sa Article nyu,, I cant believed that Bangladesh passes the Philippines in terms of Progress.

    • Lino

      Steve. . . may be you’ve loaned the money to your wife’s relatives lol, most likely they wont pay you at all because they knew that your wife is living extravagant with a foreigner husband. A reminder to all, do not lend money if a borrower has no capability to pay specially relatives of your wife. If this statement is true, again this is an issue of personal matter and not related to, why Philippines still poor?

  • HumeRoix

    nice one….masakit pero totoo….

  • Susan

    Hindi natin masisi kung ganun ang tingin nang India sa pilipinas kasi totoo naman. Maraming pilipino at walang ipon. Kasi may tintawag tayo ubos-ubos biyaya. Pag wala nakatunga-nga.Ang pagiging One day Milyonaire ang kadalasan ugali natin kapag nakuha ang sahod. kain doon-kain dito. Sabi nila ang hirap na daw nang Pilipinas.Bakit naman nang umuwi ako lahat ata! nang mga kainan fastfood restaurant shopping malls. Punong-puno. I can’t believed kasi dito sa LA nag sara ang paborito kung restauarant. Nag babawas ang karamihan nang mga tao sa pag kain dahil sa economy crises..Hindi makabante ang pinas dahil hanggang ngayon sobra-sobra ang gastos nila at hindi alam ang long term goal na mag ipon…..

    • ronnie

      ubos ubos nga rin kung gumastos ang politiko sa pera ng bayan eh tayo pa kaya which is pera nman natin un?…kuha mo? kahit anu pa gawin ng tao sa personal income nya irrelevant na don ang tanong sa Bakit ang Pinas mahirap pa rin! mag base ka sa tanong hnd sa characteristics natin…tingnan mo un gobyerno ng Australia, New Zealand, Singapore dahil magaling kaya mayaman lahat ng tao nila…u got my point? hehe kahit mayaman ka pa kung ang buong bansang Pilipinas ay mahirap na belong ka pa rin sa mahirap….thats the logic!

      • Susan

        Bakit kaya ang ,mga tao lagi sinisisi ang Govt. sa pag hihirap nila ganun may sarili silang pag iisp kung paano dapat nila pag yamanin kung ano meron sila. Dahil kung pag nanakaw nang mga politiko ang dahilan nang pag hihirap baka wala na rin mayaman sa mundo.Mayaman ang Singgapore coz, they are not to have 10 children. at sigurado kang walang mahirap diyan kasi iyun din ang akala ko noon walang mahirap sa US. Walang squatter dito mas maraming HOMELESS.Saan ka man mag punta may mag-nanakaw na mga poilitiko but it doesn’t mean. Kaya ka nag hihirap dahil sa kanila…You got my point too…..

        • ronnie_jeddah

          the question here is “why philippines is still poor? not.. why filipino is still poor? very simple question…hahaha

          • Steven Macon

            The Philippines, as a country, is poor because of extreme political corruption at all levels of government, from the local baranguay captains to the senators and congressmen up in Manila. It was ironic, was it not,..when, recently…it was exposed that the so-called, “rescue boats”, the government was supposed to have purchased were so lightweight, that to place a suitable outboard motor on them ..the motor would have outweighed the boat and capsized it! LOL! I always say this about the Philippines…H & H. That stands for HELPLESS and HOPELESS.

            • ronnie_jeddah

              so ngayon sino ang dapat sisihin ang taong bayan? ang bawat filipino dahil hnd marunong magtipid ng kinikita? anu kinalaman dito sa tanong bkt ang pilipinas ay mahirap pa rin? bkt lagi na lng daw ang gobyerno sinisisi? ang daming kaltas sa sahod, luubak lubak na kalsada, hnd safe ang buhay mo sa public, maraming magnanakaw dahil sa hirap ng buhay dahil yon wla ng mahanap na trabaho, ang iba pugot ulo sa abroad para mabuhay ang pamilya sa pinas, pag uwi bangkay na, yon iba nasisiraan na ng isip, tapos sisihin pa ang pinoy bakit hnd nag iipon? hahhaa mag focus po tayo sa tanong na :why philippines is still poor? anu ang gagawin ng gobyerno kung paanu e-lessen ang poverty sa pinas…d nyo napanuod P10.00 para sa school buidling samantla may budget nman ang CHED…kahit chalk hnd makabili…hehe ridiculous!

          • Susan

            Dahil din sa mga tao kaya maraming corrupt dahil ang mamayan ang bomboto.Sino ba ang bomoboto ang mga mamayan at dahil sa kunting halaga kaya nila tumnggap nag suhol.Hindi ba kaya tinggal si Erap dahil corrupt. Ang inilagay buwaya dahil boung pamilya nagnanakaw.Sino ang bomoto tao..Kaya dapat sisihin ang mga tao..KUha ninyo.Dahil ang mamayan ang bmoboto at ultimong patay nakakabuto.Iyan ang sasabihin ninyo Why Phil Island still poor……

            • ronnie_jeddah

              so ngayon na uunawaan nyo na ang tanong? basahin mo sa ibaba nasabi ko na yang sagot mo…

      • ravio

        Another stupid assessment Ronnie. Politicians easily spend the money because they have not hardly earned it otherwise any person in his sane condition will not simply spend something he worked hard for. I think you need to study LOGIC 101 to come up with a sensible comment. You are exposing your blatant ignorance whenever you are posting your comment.

        • ronnie_jeddah

          wala kayong kayong ligic kasi mali mga sagot ninyo…ang tanong “why philippines is still poor?” all your answers are definitely correct if the question is “why filipino is still poor?” patay tayo dyan!…haha

    • Susan

      Maraming mga Pilipinoa nag tatarabaho sa labas kahit na sa bansang giyera. Ngunit handa silang mag paiwan huwag lang umuwisa sariling bayan. Dahil walang pera babalika, 20,30 years of working hindi nakapag ipon. Ang dahilan kulang pa daw ang pindadala,Sa akin kahit sa isang libo isang buwan ay maiipon. At iyan hindi gagalawin kahit paano kung ang isang mahal sa buhay na gusto muna magpahinga habang magulo sa lugar mmron perang magagastos.Habang nandit.The thrut most pilipino has mno saving.

  • bj dela cruz

    Why did the author bowed down to that indian? Yes, there are very rich people in india yet there are also lots of very poor people in there. So, i think he had no right to comment as if he or his people are superior in any way. Why are we poor? The top answer is not the way we handle our finances. One of the answers was mentioned by the author herself. We don’t really trust our fellow Filipinos, we want to look down on one another. Somehow, we want to be above the others(Filipinos, but we look up to the foreigners). Because we only have very few opportunities to be “the one.” Our system of government kasi does not allow every citizen/family the chance to lead even once. Existing trapos corner the power within their families lang, kaya the rest, naghihilahan pababa para maka-angat, crab mentality. That’s the reason why cooperatives don’t prosper in our country, every member wants to be chairman/boss. So what we need to do is to learn to really, really love our countrymen, trust them, support them, so we could attain progress and the respect from other nationalities. This way, those foreigners will invest here which will boost out economy.

  • g’day

    so true even if it hurts but it’s never too late! perhaps moral and simple accounting lessons should be taught early in school so future generation can spend money wisely.

  • Paul

    In other words, Filipinos are financially illiterate. There are 3 kinds of people (according to finances): a spender, a saver, and an investor. More Filipinos are spenders than savers & investors combined. That’s the truth.

    But there is still hope. Many NGOs are now focusing on financial education. They are called by many names like micro-financing, SMEs, etc. What’s important is that we save at least 20% of our active income, and invest it to become passive income. Individually, we can be financially independent if are passive income is greater than active income. There are also a lot of foundations out there who teach financial literacy.

    Let’s not point fingers on who’s to blame. Don’t blame the government, as people can still be financially literate on any types of government. We just need a lot of discipline to save and invest instead of spending it all. I repeat, a lot of discipline!

    • Steven Macon

      Paul, you are right. This is what I have been trying to say now..on several blogs, about Filipinos. If they would just SAVE part of their income instead of blowing it all on baboy, parties, Tanduay rum, loads for their cell phone, themselves, etc., they just might have some savings when they get too old to work. I have a Filipino brother-in-law who is 57 years old now. Does he have even one centavo saved from all the years he worked on ships as an air conditioning duct man? He does not. After my wife, (his sister), had a recent LONG TALK with him, he NOW seems concerned about what he will do when he can no longer work. He should have been thinking about that when he was 25 years old.

    • ronnie

      uu nga bakit sya nag bowed down sa Indiano anu maitutulong ng Indiano sa atin? kung nagtataka rin lng nman sya kung bakit mahirap tayo d dahil sa magastos tayo, ang estado ng buhay natin sa pinas nakadependi un sa pamamalakad ng ating gobyerno sa Pinas, meron nga tayo tax hnd nman na pakikinabangan ng mga matatanda, mga wlang trabaho, ng may mga kapansanan, asensado lng ang isang bansa kapag suportado ng kanyang gobyerno, hnd sya doon mag base sa personal income ng bawat pinoy, parang tanga!…or kung anu pinang gagawa ng pinoy sa buhay nya, as a whole nasa pamamalakad yan ng presidenti, paanu naman kc ang Senado may artista? anu alam ni Sen. Sotto, Revilla at lapid sa senado? yan ang malaking mali ng pinoy bumubuto ng tangang kandidato!….so kung ang tanong nya bakit mahirap pa rin ang pinas? dahil un sa mga pinuno ng bansa na TANGA AT HND MAGALING!….hwag kayo mag basi sa characteristics ng pinoy, kung ang pinuno ng bansa hnd magaling kahit magaling pa ang mga tao nya maapektuhan ang lahat. baho kili-kili indiano un…paanu kung inisip nya kung paanu matanggal ang baho sa kili kili nya mas mainam pa…or else this blog is kathang isip lamang…analyse mo un situation in real world…

      • ravio

        Ronnie, I hate to say this but your comment is entirely out of context and discriminating. One of the reasons why the Philippines is trailing behind other nations is because of the character, attitude and outlook of people like you (sorry if I am being sounded as a racist)! Be a man to face the reality as what you said in order to fit to the real world you are saying. The reality is that each and everyone has its contribution to the outcome of the society he/she is into. The collective effect of this contribution whether positive or otherwise will reflect our image as a nation and as an individual. Ronnie grow up as it is annoying to see people like you posting messages and bragging their stupidity in an intelligent discussion forum like this!

        • ronnie_jeddah

          sagot mo puro english pero wla naman sense! hahahhaa tatagalugin ko : “bakit mahirap pa rin ang Pilipinas?” dahil mga pinoy hindi marunong magtipid, you says. hahahaha no answer, no crown. joke lng! worst airport, high unemployment rate, poor governance, graft and corruption, nepotism, no investors, terrorist country, bombings anywhere, im sorry im off the topic dapat pala marunong magtipid…hahahhaha wala akong logic tol eh, try nyo mag survey kung ang pinoy susubukan magtipid ng sarili nyang kita baka yayaman na ang pilipinas…anu ang pakialam ng pilipinas sa savings account mo or sa properties mo? hahaha ayos ka rin ah?

          • Danny

            Ronnie wake up dong.

        • eve1969ph

          I agree with U , Ravio…I think Ronnie should not participate in high-level discussions until he is at least 18? (lolz)

  • virginia pediten

    ilang beses ko na bang narinig ang mga katagang “oi sa private na mag-aaral ang mga anak ko at bibilhan ko na ng kotse ung binata ko kasi mag ka college na”…..but in fairness to the millions of Filipinos abroad, me mga wise sa kanilang pinagpaguran.

    • eve1969ph

      True that. I have had encounters with people who worry about money everyday but would lie, steal, cheat and borrow for the sake of acquiring the latest gadgets, even their kids have those, as well…they sport designer clothes, drive cars and send their kids to expensive schools even when they don’t have an extra peso to spare inside their designer bags (of course, all HULUGAN..lolz)..anyways, at least ,hindi nga naman halatang naghihirap..lolz…

      People should learn to meditate on these words from time to time: “Pag maigsi ang kumot, matutong mamaluktot”

      I am not afraid to admit I have no money eh sa wala talaga eh..What I have is enough to keep the house afloat. Wala man ako ng mga expensive stuffs or di man ako nakakagala-gala at least wala ako pinoproblemang utang.. My bills are paid on time and or basic needs are met. May ipon pa. 🙂 Best to save while we still can as we do not know what will happen tomorrow. Saka na luho…

  • Abeng

    There is a lot of truth on what the Indian guy said. When I was still in the Philippines we have several neighbors who have OFW in their household. Pero walang nagbago sa buhay nila. Everytime nakatanggap ng pera galing sa anak o asawa from abroad shopping dito ng kung anu-ano. Di man nalang matapos ang pinagawang bahay. I am just lucky that my family are not like that. My parents knows how to spend what they had wisely. Tingnan nyo ang mga tao na nakatira sa mga mahihirap nga lugar at the end of the day instead of saving the money that they still have ginagastos pa sa sugal or sa inuman. I went to the province for a vacation pero ganyan din ang napapansin ko. Social status concern that is very true. Mga pinoy na kaibigan ko dito sa America kung anong bagong labas na technological gadgets gusto bibili agad. Pag malaman na yong friend nila meron gusto din bumili. Ako lang yata sa mga kaibigan ko na hindi bumili ng ipod, iphone, ipad or mamahaling laptop. My cousin told me that her friends are driving luxury cars pero wala namang bahay at nakatira sa mumurahing apartment pero yong pinsan ko mapera yong asawa nya pero hindi Lexus or BMW ang sasakyan. The spend their money in helping our kakabayan helping kids go to college, a leprosy center, patubig sa schools. Sa Pilipinas pag nag retire na tayo sa trabaho can we afford to go on a vacation sa ibat-ibang lugar? I don’t think so because we don’t always think of what will happen when we retire? We need to educate our family how to save and spend our money as we don’t know what’s going to happen in the future.

  • Carol

    the point that the Philippine government pass on to become a territory of the US is that the Filipinos want to have their own identity to themselves and for themselves. The country itself got invaded and conqured for how many centruries that they were saying enough is enough.

  • Tina Maria S.

    “Let’s just change and manage self-control over things.” Let’s mind our own problems. With due respect to my fellowmen, it’s better that we borrow(but, should really pay ha..)than to steal and make things worse. Filipinos have great skills, I can attest to that, but some are using it wrongly.”

  • Natamaan ako dyan a. Kaya hindi pa huli ang lahat. Dapat tayong Pilipino ay marunong magtipid. At marunong maginvest ng ating pinapagurang pera.

    • Carol

      huwag kang magtipid, magtabi ka lang for rainy days. baka naman kayod ka ng kayod di mo naman ma-enjoy pinaghirapan mo. Not only that you deserve it. ret and pamper yourself

      • tama ka dyan. Oo nga ang tamang salita ay mag tabi kahit papaano. Huwag ewaldas ang lahat na kinikita.

      • Tina Maria S.


  • heng

    may punto naman ung indian kaso ilang percent kaya ng population ang ginamit niya as sample to draw his conclussion?naisip din kaya niyang kung maraming gastador na filipino ay marami ding mapagimpok?subalit bakit kaya mahirap pa rin ang pilipinas?
    tanong lang po?cnu kaya ang nagkukulang?mga mamamayan bang gastador at hindi marunong mag impok? o mga namumuno at nagpapatupad ng batas sa ating bansa?

  • heng

    ang saya naman,,madami akong natutunan sa mga comments ninyo.

    • Paul

      There’s a difference between savings and investing. Savings are low-risk, and the interest you get from them is not enough to compensate the inflation rate (4% for time deposits vs. 7% inflation rate national average). Investing is medium to high risk (depends on the neterprise an individual will take), but beat the infaltion rate as you can earn at least 10%.

      Kung ako ang tatanungin, lahat naman tayo ang may problema, di lang ang gobyerno. Sino ba ang nagluklok sa kanila sa pwesto, hinde ba tayo? Kung gusto natin ayusin ang buhay natin, simulan muna natin sa sarili natin. Malamang, kung maayos ang pagkakapili natin sa mga namumuno sa gobyerno, eh maayos din ang pagpapatakbo nila. Pero hinde pa rin sila ang nagpapatakbo ng buhay natin, ang ating mga sarili pa rin.

  • Bien

    when it comes to politics, Filipinos have ADD (Attention Deficit Syndrome). Our politicians have made mistakes one after another, yet we LET them get away with it! We vote for them, even after a series of terms of practically doing nothing! Heck, we even allowed one to be voted in as our President! We believe what they say through the media, just because they keep repeating it, even if logic tells us otherwise. In other countries, BS is seen as BS. Here, if a celebrity says it, then hell, it must be freakin’ true.

    Don’t blame the Indian messenger. what he said has some truth in it. Don’t blame me, because our country’s situation is proof of it. We even allowed the 40% foreign/60% local ownership of a foreign company to be placed in our constitution when logic states that it would mean less jobs for the people. Since 1986 (Cory’s admin), the people don’t even get that until now. We’re the only one in Asia with that kind of provision. Other countries even allow them to own homes, just to get them to stay. Here, we practically make it seem stupid of them to do business here.

    Open your eyes and see the truth… the oligarchs own us, and we’re thanking them for it? Or do I have to spell it out further? Kung 100% foreign owned ang company na itatayo nila dito, mas maganda sila magbigay ng benefits at pa sweldo. Pag pinasok na ng mga oligarch yan, gusto nila puro kabig, walang paki sa manggagawa. kaya importante na nasa kanila ang controlling ownership ng lahat ng kumpanya sa Pilipinas. when you think about it, it’s not really rocket science. now you know why we’re in such a rut! now you also know why the don’t want to cha-cha…

    • Tina Maria S.

      ..”Bien, in fairness to us ordinary Filipinos, wala tayong mapiling politiko na walang selfish and hidden intentions, dahil sa mas may pera sila to build a fake image, they were able to convince us that they will help save the nation. That’s why changes should start within us individuals.”

    • Steven Macon

      Filipinos literally cannot “see the forest for the trees”. They are very intelligent, have great skills, learn new things easily, and are very innovative but…their problem is, as someone pointed out, they are stuck in a rut. It is their way of thinking about things that holds the whole country back. As a result, India, Indonesia and even Viet Nam seem to be pulling ahead of the Philippines in many ways. Sad. Until the mind set of the average Filipino is changed to reflect honesty and a NEW way of doing things,..including NOT cheating foreigners and letting foreigners open businesses in the Philippines freely…nothing will change much.

      • Good point.

      • Carol

        before you put done any country, have your people fix your toilet problem, instead of defecating in the public. your people is pulling u down too. u know, wink wink

  • rhumgin

    i would say it/s true,i have gladly found a close friend who is Indian,and much as I hate to admit it..she always points out to me good naturedly how i don’t save and always wants to buy branded clothes..and Indian as she is,she is the one right now,who is actually making me save and breaking habits that are not really good…so for the most part,a lot of your Indian colleague’s observation is true..and I guess all we need to do is to start changing within ourselves and from there everything will follow…:)