This brings us to bad debt. Quite simply, bad debt is everything that is NOT described in the above paragraph. It is the increase in the amount of bad debt that should be raising alarm bells. The interest paid on bad debt is not offset by anything. Debt is bad when it is used to fund non-durable stuff, stuff that loses value (depreciates) over time, or stuff that incurs on-going expenses for its owner (on top of the interest one pays on the loan used to buy said stuff!).
Measuring the amount of debt owed by the Philippines should be put in the context of how much of our national debt (our liabilities) funds productive assets.
Consider then the $400 million in "development" loans awarded by the Asian Development Bank to the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). A significant component of that is fundamentally no more than a cash dole-out to poor Filipino families as blogger Ben Kritz observes...
The program provides cash grants to poor families with the stated intention of helping these families keep their elementary-aged children in school. Each family that qualifies for the program receives Php 500 per month, plus an addition Php 300 per month for each of up to three children per family, with monthly and annual limits set at Php 1,400 and Php 15,000, respectively.
Kritz also cites a few specifics on the circumstances surrounding the approach to disbursing the funds and the overarching administration of its application to the economy. The systemic risk of the planned approach he summed up quite pointedly...
[...] if there are irregularities in the handling of the funds, they will only be discovered once the funds are already gone.
To that I shall add the following question:
What is the productive asset that will be the outcome of the disposal of these funds?
In short, what is it specifically that we plan to have to show for after all these funds are gone? What will we have added to our society's capital base?
Given the way Filipinos tend to spend the hard-earned remittances of their OFW kin, I doubt if this new source of easy cash that the DSWD plans to throw into "Da Pinoy Poverty Problem" will go into building anything new and sustainable in our society.