ILOILO CITY: Business climate in Visayas regions has remained upbeat amid the slight decline in confidence during the second quarter of the year.
This was according to the result of the second quarter business expectation survey (BES) presented by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) during its annual appreciation lunch for stakeholders from Western Visayas and Negros Island Region (NIR) held here Tuesday.
Rosabel B. Guerrero, director of BSP’s department of economic statistics, in her presentation of development indicators in Visayas, said that business sentiment in Visayas was less upbeat during the second quarter due to several factors such as controlled spending by consumers during the election campaign period, weak demand for transportation service of agriculture products due to the adverse effect of the El Niño phenomenon and fewer enrollees due to the full implementation of the K to 12 program.
Also, the lesser optimism for the third quarter was due to the “seasonal slump of demand during the rainy season and uncertainty on the agenda” of now President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.
The survey with 1,482 companies as respondents was conducted by the BSP from April 1 to May 17, 2016.
However, while business confidence according to the survey was weak for the said periods, employment outlook remained favorable across all regions of Visayas, although lower in Western and Eastern Visayas.
“This indicates that firms will continue to hire new employees for the remainder of 2016,” she explained.
Also, while firms with expansion plans in Central and Eastern Visayas declined, they remained positive. An increase in the number of firms with expansion plans when compared with the previous quarter’s survey was noted in Western Visayas.
“This means firms may introduce new product lines or expand their operations,” she added.
“Overall, we see their continued optimism because there are still more optimistic businesses compared to those with pessimistic views,” she added.
She added that from the responses of the respondents, they see their operations as “something that could support sustained growth for them and as a contribution to the growth of the economy in the region.”