Duterte debuts on 'The World's 74 Most Powerful People' | Inquirer Business

Duterte debuts on ‘The World’s 74 Most Powerful People’

By: - Business Features Editor / @philbizwatcher
/ 02:04 PM December 15, 2016

The unorthodox President Rodrigo Duterte has debuted on Forbes magazine’s eighth annual list of the world’s most powerful people on the planet, a roster which is topped by the Philippine head of state’s idol, Russian president Vladimir Putin.

Mr. Duterte ranked number 70 in Forbes’ The World’s 74 Most Powerful People which was drawn up based on the following metrics: how many people they have power over; the financial resources they control; if they have influence in more than one sphere; and how actively they wield their power to change the world.


Putin retained the top spot on this year’s Forbes’ eighth annual ranking while US president-elect Donald Trump seized the No. 2 slot, up from No. 72 in 2015 when he first appeared on the list. This was the biggest leap ever seen on the list.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel remained as the world’s most powerful woman, ranking third on this list and the highest-ranking woman. Barack Obama, the outgoing US president, dropped to 48 this year from No. 3 in 2015 as he is leaving office in January.


Mark Zuckerberg (No. 10), founder and CEO of social networking giant Facebook, is the youngest person on the list.

“Forbes’ list this year of The World’s Most Powerful People reflects rapid and profound change happening around the globe. The biggest trend this year is likely the rise to power of Donald Trump, as well as the increasing power of his supporters and allies,” Forbes Contributing Editor David Ewalt said in a press statement.

For his part, Mr. Duterte has appeared on the list for the first time. In a press statement, Forbes noted that he was “realigning a century-long strategic alliance with the U.S. towards China and whose voice is increasingly heard far outside of Asia.”

In the article on its Dec. 30 issue, the magazine noted that the former mayor of Davao City was elected president of the Philippines on the strength of a campaign that promised the swift execution of drug users and other criminals, adding that his war on crime had already resulted in the killing of thousands of people.

Likewise cited was Duterte’s announcement during his state visit to China a “separation” from a century-long strategic alliance with United States and plans to “realign” the Philippines towards China.

“Duterte’s tendency to say what he thinks, no matter how raw, also keeps him in the headlines: He’s referred to U.S. President Barack Obama as a ‘son of a whore’ and used homophobic slurs to describe political opponents. In December, the country’s independently elected vice president, Leni Robredo, resigned an additional position which she’d been appointed to by Duterte. The VP cited ‘major differences in principles and values’ with the President, and promised to head up a new opposition party,” the article said.

Other newcomers to the list include Theresa May, Prime Minister, U.K. (No. 13), replacing the former prime minister, David Cameron, who was ranked last year; Khalid Al-Falih, Oil Minister, Saudi Arabia (No. 49); Bashar al-Assad, President, Syria (No. 63); Bob Iger, CEO, Walt Disney (No. 67); Charles Schumer, U.S. Senator, Minority Leader (No. 74), and Ayman al-Zawahiri, leader, Al Qaeda (No. 71).


Also new to the list is Travis Kalanick, CEO, Uber (No. 64), who is featured on the cover of this latest issue of Forbes magazine. The cover story Uber’s Bold Move examined how Kalanick has driven Uber to become the richest startup in history, with a valuation of $68 billion, and how the company is striving to change the way everything moves.

The top 10 most powerful people in the planet, according to Forbes, are:

1. Vladimir Putin President, Russia
2. Donald Trump, President-elect, US
3. Angela Merkel, Chancellor, Germany
4. Xi Jinping, China president and General Secretary, Communist Party of China
5 Pope Francis of the Roman Catholic Church
6. Janet Yellen, Chair of the US Federal Reserve
7. Bill Gates, Chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
8. Larry Page CEO, Alphabet (parent company of tech giant Google)
9. Narendra Modi, Prime Minister, India Government & Policy India
10. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO, Facebook

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