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Rising Exports to Boost Philippines Q3 Growth

Exports extended their growth trajectory for the ninth consecutive month in August.Exports extended their growth trajectory for the ninth consecutive month in August.

Economic growth in the third quarter is expected to receive a boost from rising exports, increased government spending and recovery in the global economy, Philippines’ Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said.

“The forecast is, it’s going to be better than the second quarter. The outlook on the global economy has improved so exports are increasing. Our government spending has also been increasing double-digits,” he said, PNA reported.

The agriculture sector is also expected to sustain its recovery as typhoons that visited the country have been less destructive. “I think the agriculture sector will also be performing better,” Pernia said.

The economy grew 6.5% in the second quarter of the year, driven by strong gains in the industry sector and the turnaround in the agriculture sector. Growth in the second quarter was slightly faster than the 6.4% recorded in the first quarter but slower than the 7.1% growth in the second quarter of 2016.

The stronger-than-expected growth of 6.3% in the agriculture sector in the second quarter–from 4.9% in the first quarter and negative 2% in the second quarter of 2016–also gave GDP growth a boost. This brings the 2017 first semester growth to 6.4%, down from 7% in the first semester of 2016.

To meet the lower end of the full-year target growth of 6.5% to 7.5% for 2017, the economy has to grow by 6.5% in the succeeding quarters.

Exports extended their growth trajectory for the ninth consecutive month in August, driven by double-digit growth in shipments to ASEAN, EU and other Asian trade partners. Exports rose 9.3% to $5.51 billion during the month from $5.04 billion last year.

For August alone, government spending on projects rose 14% to P201.6 billion ($3.91 billion) from the P177 billion recorded in the same month in 2016. Meanwhile, Philippines targets $122 billion to $131 billion revenues from exports of goods and services by the end of the Duterte administration, Export Marketing Bureau Director Senen Perlada said Friday.

He said the country also eyes services exports to increase its share to 50% of the total exports by end-2022, from its current 32 to 34% share.

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