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Filipino Youth & Tech: Keys to Future of ASEAN

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ASEAN has recently celebrated its golden anniversary in the Philippines, and it’s inevitable to ask the question: What’s next? Although the future of ASEAN seems to be in good hands, what ensures its success in the Philippines specifically? There are plenty of factors that can disrupt progress, especially for a developing country, so what will reassure potential investors and new entrepreneurs to venture to the country? What makes the Philippines worth the risk? What makes you certain that ASEAN will continue its ascension to success?

Thankfully, there are two strong factors that placate these fears.

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Related Infographic: ASEAN Update: What to Expect

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The Filipino Youth

“Youth is the hope of our future.” This striking quote by Rizal is still relevant today, it seems, as the younger generation has been reported to be vital to the country’s progress. According to a study named “The Truth About Youth Philippines” by McCann Truth Central, Filipino youth feel that they:

  • Have a responsibility to make a positive contribution to the community they live in. This is higher than the global average of 89%.
  • Want to be remembered as a person who has changed the world. This is a sentiment shared by 26% of the Filipino youth.

This is the same youth who, by the year 2025, would be 72% of the global workforce.If the Filipino youth have such ideals, one can hope to expect a rather positive people working within the economy.

Preparation via the K-12 Plan

Surely, this optimism is for nothing if the country does not provide the means to equip the youth properly. A well-educated youth is a stronger youth, after all. The K-12 education program covers Kindergarten, 6 years of primary education, 4 years of Junior High School and 2 years of Senior High School. This provides enough time for students to learn and grasp complex concepts and skills that would make them into lifelong learners, and of course, prepare them for tertiary education. This program aims to reduce the number of dropouts in the Philippines. According to current data, they can reach a 90 percent enrollment rate of the expected 1.5 million Grade 10 completers.

To add to that, the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) has also partnered with the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) which would allow teachers at higher education institutions to work on different various ICT projects this year. This agreement opens up a total of 86 slots for college and university teachers through the Sectoral Engagement (SE) Grants under CHed’s K-12 Transition Program. According to CHEd Chair Patricia Licuanan, “With the expertise of our faculty and staff, we are confident that this partnership will make significant progress in strengthening ICT capacities across the country.”

This would no doubt train and inspire students to harness their skills for nation building. The BPO industry, for one, would benefit from this upgrade in education standards.

Technology

Of course, this all wouldn’t be possible without Technology. Seeing as how students from K12 — will eventually grow to be the tech professionals that would fill the tech jobs in the near future, it only secures the steady rise of the IT industry in the country. Youth and Tech go hand in hand, after all.

The community has been active encouraging the tech industry, seeing as how ICT can empower businesses via better efficiency, communication and security, and to surge globalisation in the economy. Last June. DICT celebrated the National Information and Communications Technology Month in the Philippines, as a way to acknowledge how ICT positively impacts the country. This event alone managed to provide a lot of digital opportunities for Filipinos. Other active non-government organizations include DevCon Philippines and the IT-centric job portal ictjob.ph.

The National Broadband Plan

With the high rise of mobile usage in the Philippines (we have 90 percent penetration), and the full growth of the ICT sector in the past decade, the government finally wishes to adopt the use of broadband or high speed internet access in the country. The National Broadband Plan aims to implement certain strategies and steps to achieve universal internet access for all Filipinos. This would trigger better economic development and social inclusion.

The National Broadband Plan envisions “A resilient, comfortable and vibrant life for all, enabled by open, pervasive, inclusive, affordable, and trusted broadband internet access.” This is in accordance with Executive Order No. 5, s. 2016, a plan that is included in the implementation of the 25-year vision of “Ambisyon Natin 2040”. This vision hopes to “raise the Filipinos’ living standards”.

Youth & Tech for the Future

When it comes to outsourcing, youth and tech will be the key to the country’s continuous development and progress. This is also why Eastvantage continues to be the bridge between foreign businessmen and the Filipino workforce — the same way ASEAN works to connect nations and economies to each other for the advancement of all. That’s why we believe that both foreign investors and entrepreneurs need not worry because the Philippines is more than ready for the future.