MANILA – A majority of panelists interviewed for the NCR COVID-19 Online Panel Survey expressed disapproval for proposals to allocate government funding for bailouts of big businesses that have suffered significant losses during the economic slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
55.4% of the 1,000 respondents who participated in the survey said they disapprove of the proposal to provide big businesses with financial support. Only 44.6% of respondents said they approve of the proposal.
Financial support for big businesses was the only policy out of nine existing or proposed COVID-19-related policies tested by the survey which failed to garner majority support. The others were: Providing frontline medical services people with additional pay (97.6% approval); Mass testing to identify all persons with COVID-19 (94.7%); Providing financial support to small business owners (93.6%); Providing government-controlled transportation services during the quarantine (93.3%); Distribution of relief packs to households under quarantine (84.5%); Distribution of cash transfers to households under quarantine (83.7%); Extension of the quarantine (75.5%); Allowing controlled return to work of some employees (68.4%).
“This result indicates that the government will have to do extra work to justify to the public the passage of economic stimulus legislation to provide bailouts to large hotel chains, upscale tourism operations, airlines, and other large corporations that have suffered major financial losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mr. Aureli Sinsuat, PUBLiCUS Executive Director and spokesperson.
“It will also be a challenge for the national government to find consensus on the different proposals being suggested by various stakeholders focusing primarily in big businesses. As of 2018, there are a million MSMEs in the country which is 99.52% of businesses in the country – 50% of which are into wholesale/retail trade, contributing 63% of the country’s total employment force,” he added.
The NCR COVID-19 Survey was conducted by PUBLiCUS and its in-house strategic research brand, VOX Opinion Research, in partnership with Singapore-based Lightspeed Research/Kantar Asia-Pacific from April 2-6.
Lightspeed provided an online panel of 1,000 Metro Manila residents aged 18-70 from its pool of 100,000 Philippine panelists. The number of respondents per city was distributed proportionally based on official population data. The survey data was processed and analyzed by VOX Opinion Research.
NCR COVID-19 Survey is the second online panel poll conducted by PUBLiCUS. The first was the PAHAYAG NCR survey conducted in November 2017, also in partnership with Lightspeed.
The survey aimed to gauge public opinion on the following key indicators: (1) approval rating on the implementation of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) in NCR; (2) approval ratings of key public officials and government entities in responding to the pandemic; (3) support for existing and proposed government measures to respond to the pandemic and provide aid to constituents in need; and (4) living standards of Metro Manila residents under the ECQ.
Reference: Mr. Aureli C. Sinsuat, PUBLiCUS Executive Director