Survey says US still 'most trusted' by Filipinos

THE United States (US) is still the "most trusted" nation while China remains the "least trusted" country by the Filipino people, results of a Pulse Asia survey revealed.Eight of 10,

THE United States (US) is still the "most trusted" nation while China remains the "least trusted" country by the Filipino people, results of a Pulse Asia survey revealed.

Eight of 10, or 84 percent of, adult Filipinos trust the US, the survey showed. More than half, or 54 percent, have a "fair amount of trust" while 29 percent have a "great deal of trust."

Only 16 percent do not trust the US, including two percent who have "no trust at all" while the other 13 percent have "not too much trust." One percent was ambivalent on the matter.

Other "trusted" nations, after the US, are Japan, Australia, and Great Britain or United Kingdom.

The survey, conducted by Pulse Asia from December 14 to 21, was made even after President Rodrigo Duterte pivoted his foreign policy away from Washington and towards China and Russia.

Reacting to the Pulse Asia's survey results, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said it was not surprising that the US remains the most trusted country by most Filipinos.

"I said it's understandable for Filipinos to feel that way because ngayon pa lang (until now), we've been used to the [United] States being our ally. So mas sanay tayo sa America (So we're more used to America)," Panelo told a press conference.

"And siguro as we go along at makikita niyo 'yung sincerity ng (Perhaps, as we go along and you see the sincerity of) China with respect to agreemetns between the two countries, eh baka mabago 'yung kanilang pananaw (you'll change your perception)... It takes some time for people to accept certain changes that they are not used to it," he added.

Duterte's relationship with the US, a long-time ally of the Philippines, was strained under the leadership of former American President Barack Obama, who criticized the deadly war on illegal drugs.

Philippine ties with the US improved under incumbent President Donald Trump, whom Duterte considers a "friend".

Duterte, however, continues to favor China, which has cornered several big-ticket infrastructure projects, and Russia.

The Pulse Asia survey, however, showed that Filipinos have least trust in China and Russia, with trust scores of 49 percent and 45 percent, respectively.

The survey found that six percent have a “great deal of trust” in China while 33 percent have a “fair amount of trust.”

The survey found that 60 percent have no trust in China, including 40 percent with “not too much trust” and 20 percent having “no trust at all.”

On the other hand, six percent of the Filipino people have a “great deal of trust” in Russia while 38 percent have a “fair amount of trust.”

Pulse Asia found that 54 percent do not trust Russia, 38 percent of whom have “not too much trust” while 15 percent have “no trust at all.”

According to the poll results, Japan is the next most trusted country by the Filipinos, posting a 75 percent trust score (19 percent with “great deal of trust” and 55 percent with a “fair amount of trust”). Twenty-five percent do not trust Japan (21 percent have “not too much trust” while four percent have “no trust at all”).

Australia came next, getting a trust rating of 72 percent (15 percent with “great deal of trust” and 57 percent with a “fair amount of trust”). Some 27 percent of Filipinos do not trust Australia (21 percent have “not too much trust” while five percent have “no trust at all”).

Great Britain was fourth on the list of trusted countries, with a trust score of 57 percent (eight percent with a “great deal of trust” and 49 percent with a “fair amount of trust). Forty percent of Filipinos do not trust Great Britain (30 percent have “not too much trust” and 10 percent have “no trust at all”).

"Most Filipinos are of the view that the Philippines should give a great deal or fair amount of trust to the Untied States (84 percent), Japan (75 percent), Australia (72 percent), and Great Britain or United Kingdom (57 percent)," Pulse Asia said.

"The reverse holds true in the case of Russia And China as most Filipinos say the Philippines should extend only a little trust or not trust at all to these entities (54 percent and 60 percent, respectively)," it added.

Pulse Asia interviewed 1,800 respondents, using a sampling error margin of +2.3 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level. (SunStar Philippines)