MANILA, Philippines – Filipinos’ trust in the United States, Australia and China dropped in the first half of the year, according to the latest survey by the Social Weather Stations (SWS).
The US suffered the biggest drop in net trust rating, dipping 25 points to +42 – classified as “good” – in July from a “very good” +67 in December last year.
The SWS’ National Mobile Phone Survey, taken on July 3-6, found 60 percent of adult Filipinos expressing “much trust” in the US and 18 percent saying they have “little trust” in the country.
The figures were down from its December 2019 poll, where 74 percent of adult Filipinos expressed “much trust” and eight percent had “little trust” in the country.
“Net trust in the US has been positive since the SWS first surveyed it in December 1994. Out of 68 surveys, it ranged from ‘moderate’ +18 in May 2005 to ‘excellent’ +82 in December 2013,” the SWS noted.
The SWS survey was conducted using mobile phone and computer-assisted telephone interviewing of 1,555 adult Filipinos, 18 years old and above, nationwide.
Trust in China, meanwhile, further declined from “poor” -27 in December last year to “bad” -36 in July.
Only 22 percent of Filipinos have expressed “much trust” in China against 58 percent who said they have “little trust” in the country.
The SWS said this was China’s lowest net trust rating since the “bad” -37 in April 2016.
“Net trust in China has been positive in only nine out of 53 surveys since the SWS first surveyed it in August 1994. It reached as high as ‘moderate’ +17 in June 2010 and as low as ‘bad’ -46 in September 2015,” the pollster said.
The SWS survey was conducted a week before the Philippines marked the fourth anniversary of the landmark ruling of The Hague-based arbitral tribunal, which invalidated China’s expansive claims over the entire South China Sea.
The Permanent Court of Arbitration’s ruling on July 12, 2016 also upheld the Philippines’ rights over its 200-nautical mile exclusive economic zone under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea or UNCLOS.
Early this month, Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. had warned Beijing of the “severest response” from the Philippines if its military exercises in the South China Sea spill over to the country’s territory.
The Chinese People’s Liberation Army conducted naval exercises around Paracel Islands early this month. The disputed Paracels in the South China Sea are being claimed by China and Vietnam.
Meanwhile, Australia’s net trust rating fell from “good” +33 to “moderate” +27, with 49 percent of Filipino adults expressing “much trust” and 22 percent having “little trust” in the country.
This was the lowest net trust score obtained by Australia since the “moderate” +19 in September 2009, according to the SWS.
In December last year, 50 percent of Filipinos had “much trust” in Australia and 17 percent had expressed “little trust” in it.
Credit belongs to : www.philstar.com