chapter  5
32 Pages

The Philippines' new rich: capitalist transformation amidst economic gloom

Economic fortunes in the Philippines since independence in 1946 have commonly been portrayed as the inverse of those in other countries in the region. In the 1950s and early 1960s the Philippines had one of the fastestgrowing and most industrialised economies in Southeast Asia. It was characterised by a rising class of manufacturing entrepreneurs, a substantial salaried middle class, a growing working class, a high level of formal education and a political system organised around electoral democracy. In short, the Philippines seemed to possess all the hallmarks of modernisation, constituting a model for other countries in the region to follow.