The country’s earnings from abaca exports dropped by more than a fourth in the first quarter of the year as demand continued to slow down due to the economic crisis in traditional markets, the Fiber Industry Development Authority (FIDA) said on Thursday.
“There are still traces of the economic crisis in the United States and Europe and that affected our exports,” said Imelda Marbella, FIDA officer-in-charge of Planning and Statistics Division.
In a report, FIDA said that Philippine abaca exports reached $22.7 million in January to March 2013, or 27.4 percent lower compared to the $31.3 million a year ago.
Abaca pulp exports, which accounted 62.4 percent of the total earnings, declined by 40.1 percent at $14.2 million in the first three months of 2013 from $23.7 million during the same period last year.
Also, exports earnings of abaca cordage also fell by 27.1 percent at $ 2.8 million from $3.8 million last year. Export value of abaca fabrics, fibercrafts and raw fibers, on the other hand, increased by 67.2 percent, 61.7 percent and 21 percent, respectively.
US and Europe continued to be largest market for the country’s abaca products.
James Konstantin Galvez