2020: Local and Global Perspective

There are so many conflicts going on locally and internationally. Amidst calls for world peace, tensions between countries, regions and superpowers have taken over the stories of 2019 and early 2020. Amidst calls for unity, the growing divide between President Duterte's supporters and critics continues to widen, given policy, management and ethical differences.

The year 2020 is celebrated worldwide as the Year of the Metal Rat based on Chinese Horoscope. Notable international organizations and institutions have come up with their own initial forecasts and projections for year 2020. Economically, the World Bank projects that the world economy would achieve modern growth after posting its weakest performance since the global financial crisis. Futurists have projected that robots and artificial intelligence will become more prominent as the year 2020 kicks in. Space experts have also even predicted that private citizens can already circumnavigate the moon by 2020.

The start of year 2020 and the new decade, however, has been marked by unfortunate events.

International Events

As of this writing, Australia is being hit by the worst wildfires in decades. Based on reports, there have been about 30 human casualties, over 800 animals killed, 2000 homes destroyed or damaged, and 7.3 million hectares burned across the country's six states.

Following the death of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani due to the attack by U.S forces, Iran has fired missiles at two Iraqi military bases housing U.S troops. It is also alleged to be responsible for shooting down a passenger plane bound for Ukraine where 176 people were killed, mostly Iranians and Canadians.

The Philippine government has responded swiftly on these two major events.

About 300 Filipinos affected by the bushfire disaster in Australia have been evacuated and given temporary housing and emergency relief.

The Department of Foreign Affairs has also ordered the mandatory evacuation of about 1,000 Filipinos working in Iraq. In case the US-Iran conflict escalates, the Department of Budget and Management has allocated about Php 1.8 Billion for OFW repatriation of an estimated 1 million Middle East OFWs.

Local Events

Amidst these major international issues, the Philippine Government has taken strides to implement key projects for year 2020. Recently, the National Economic and Development Authority Investment Coordination Committee (NEDA-ICC) has approved an additional twelve infrastructure projects across various key cities in the country, including the MRT-4 project, EDSA Greenways Project, Maritime Safety Enhancement Program, and Bataan-Cavite Interlink Bridge Project among others. The government, however, continues to face severe criticism despite the gains achieved and promising plans for year 2020. Vice President and former ICAD Co-Chair Leni Robredo has come out on national television to describe the war drugs as a "massive failure." President Duterte axed V.P Robredo as ICAD Co-Chair on November 2019 due to apparent missteps in management in her 18-day tenure.

There are so many conflicts going on locally and internationally. Amidst calls for world peace, tensions between countries, regions and superpowers have taken over the stories of 2019 and early 2020. Amidst calls for unity, the growing divide between President Duterte's supporters and critics continues to widen, given policy, management and ethical differences.

We are just days into 2020 and the new decade. So much has happened, yet so much must be done to make our country and the world a better place to live in.

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About the Author
Mr. Aaron Benedict De Leon is currently a Business Development Practitioner in a private consulting firm. He has more than six years of professional experience in leading and managing political and non-government organizations, specializing in organizational management, policy development and program management. He has had stints with notable political/socio-civic organizations, serving in various capacities as: Secretary-General of the Centrist Democratic Party of the Philippines (CDP) [2013-2015], Founding Chairperson of the Centrist Democratic Youth Association of the Philippines (CDYAP) [2012-2014], Philippine Representative to the International Young Democrat Union (IYDU) [2011-2012], Chairperson of the Christian Democratic Youth [2011-2012], Secretary-General of YOUTH Philippines [2010-2011], and Spokesperson/Communications Director of the GT2010 Gilbert Teodoro Presidential Campaign [2009-2010].
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