ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon Twitter
 (placeholder image)
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte speaks during a news conference at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, May 24, 2017.   © Reuters
Politics

Duterte's popularity on the line in southern Philippine conflict

Drawn-out conflict and slow rehabilitation would hurt implementation of policy agenda

| Philippines
  • An end to President Rodrigo Duterte's offensive against Islamist extremists in the southern Philippine state of Mindanao does not seem imminent more than a month into the conflict. A drawn-out war would erode support for the president.
  • The country's record does not breed confidence that economic reconstruction will be swift - and a slow and inefficient recovery would be damaging to Mr Duterte's popularity, as it was for his predecessor Benigno Aquino following Typhoon Haiyan in 2013.
  • Though the immediate economic impact has been limited, a lengthy conflict would set back attempts to promote "inclusive growth", and weaker support for Mr Duterte would probably hinder the implementation of his policy agenda, including his planned shift to a more federalised system.

The insurgency in the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, led by local Isis-linked terrorist group Maute, has rumbled on for just over a month. Nearly 400 people have been killed, including 71 state troops and 27 civilians, while thousands have been displaced.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

Nikkei Asian Review, now known as Nikkei Asia, will be the voice of the Asian Century.

Celebrate our next chapter
Free access for everyone - Sep. 30

Find out more