The latest Regional Economic Outlook report of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) noted that the Philippines, among other ASEAN countries, is still facing severe challenges because of the pandemic. The Philippine economy is seen to remain a laggard. IMF Asia and Pacific department director Rhee released a statement that the Philippine economy has been severely affected since last year’s lockdowns due to its substantial reliance on tourism and several contact-intensive service sectors.
According to the IMF, mass vaccination alongside increasing public infrastructure spending would aid the Philippines to recover from the pandemic-induced economic downturn. With this, the country’s vaccination program continues to accelerate, as evidenced by the National Covid-19 vaccination dashboard, showing a total of 30,108,097 Filipinos that are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of November 20, 2021. Although Covid-19 vaccine doses are being delivered to the country more consistently in recent weeks, the challenge is daunting in both scope and complexity.
This is where the Power of Collaboration to end a crisis comes into the picture because public sectors can’t do it alone. The COVID-19 pandemic poses a negative impact that further slows down economic activity. That’s why several corporations took the initiative and decided that they can’t just stay put. They certainly must do something as their businesses are greatly affected. The government plays a primary role in the nation, especially in times of crisis and need, but they can’t carry the burden alone.
Research shows that a significant determinant of how organizations handle crises like the pandemic is collaboration. How do the efforts of several businesses and private sectors collaborating with public sectors make a difference?
Several businesses and private sectors have been helping the government encourage the public to get vaccinated against COVID-19 through incentives like discounts and shopping rewards. As part of the private sector’s contribution, several companies bring in their experience and expertise in the administration, communications, and supply chain of vaccines.
Just recently, the two largest restaurant brands in the country, namely Jollibee and McDonalds, announced their collaboration with the respective local government units (LGUs) in their areas. This caused some Filipinos to be shocked as these companies are known to be rivals in their industry. One can even say that this might be the greatest crossover and collaboration to exist. Mr. Pepot Miñana, the Chief Sustainability & Public Affairs officer of Jollibee Foods Corp., believes that the close collaboration between business companies in the private sector and the government would allow the country to achieve the vital goal of vaccinating 70 million Filipinos this year. This will eventually lead to herd immunity or the point when the majority of Filipinos are already immune to COVID-19.
The initiative that these corporations took is economically efficient for these fast-food chains as, at the same time, it allows for easy access for people. Since fast-food chains can be seen in multiple areas in each city, these vaccination sites become more efficient in reaching even to far-flung areas and grassroots communities. It also creates increased popularity for these business enterprises, which is an advantage itself for these enterprises.
In addition, other companies like ICTSI and Go Negosyo helped with procurement through tripartite agreements, and Zuellig and Unilab lent their expertise for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. In addition, private healthcare providers that include St. Luke’s Medical Center, The Medical City, and Ayala Healthcare Holdings, Inc. (AC Health) will administer vaccines. These companies will make their hospital’s available capacity available to national and local government units in the National Capital Region. AllDay supermarket gives a discount of up to 200 pesos to fully vaccinated shoppers. In addition, the discount is 10 percent for dine-in at Jollibee, McDonald’s, Burger King, Chowking, Greenwich, and Mang Inasal.
Several establishments, notably restaurants and those offering personal grooming services, now display signs declaring that all employees are 100 percent fully vaccinated. Some of the establishments also provide discounts to clients with vaccination cards.
What does it take to rebuild our economy? The Philippine economy can recover with the help of businesses and private sectors to ramp up vaccination rates and improve overall pandemic response to boost consumer and business confidence. Vaccines only work if people take them. Nevertheless, the efforts of both the private and public sectors will facilitate the gradual re-opening of the economy and the country’s recovery.
To conclude, one thing is for sure, the efforts exerted on the collaboration of both public and private sectors increase the willingness of the people to get fully vaccinated. In these challenging times, crises like the Covid-19 pandemic highlight the importance of effective collaboration for the greater good. These events also show one of the Filipino values that we hold dearly in our hearts, the Bayanihan spirit. Different businesses extend their helping hand to offer whatever they can in times of crisis and put their differences aside to achieve one goal: end the pandemic.
As uncertainty and stress increased amidst the pandemic, the highly collaborative companies evolved their approach to developing business and executing work while helping rebuild the economy. The degree of collaboration during a crisis has a significant impact on the economy and whether companies thrive on ending the pandemic.
By Economasians: Kabataang Tomasino,
AZUCENA, Almario Joaquin R.
CHUA, Christelle Marie G.
ESCOBIDO, Vincent Raymund V.
MAULEON, Armaigne Mariel M.
OCHOA, Cayla Michele C.
PADUAL, Glydze Licca Maye Q.
PANGAN, Lorraine U.
PERLAS, Julia Hannah Mutya A.
Asian Development Bank. (2021, June 8). PHILIPPINES: Ramping Up Vaccination,Improving Pandemic Response Can Strengthen Recovery. Retrieved from https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2021/06/08/philippines-rampingup-vaccination-improving-pandemic-response-can-strengthen-recovery
Business World. (2021, July 2). Ending a Pandemic: Collaboration for the Greater Good. Retrieved from https://www.bworldonline.com/ending-a-pandemic-collaboration-forthe-greater-good/
Gardner, K. and Matviak, I. (2020, July 8). Seven Strategies for Promoting Collaboration in a Crisis. Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2020/07/7-strategies-for-promotingcollaboration-in-a-crisis
Philippine News Agency (2021, November 6). PH administers 63.4M doses; 29.2M now fully vaxxed. Retrieved from https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1158975