Malacañang on Thursday welcomed the latest report of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) that the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew 6 percent year-on-year in the third quarter of 2015, making it a “key emerging economy.”
Based on initial reports, the Philippines’ economic growth is the third fastest in Asia after China at 6.9 percent and Vietnam at 6.8 percent.
“We affirm NEDA’s view that the country will attain its full-year GDP growth of 6.0 percent due to better economic prospects in the last quarter,” Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said in a statement.
Coloma noted that this quarter’s GDP growth was spurred by improved government spending,which grew significantly from 3.9 percent last quarter to 17.4 percent.
“This is in line with [President Benigno Aquino 3rd’s] directives to the executive branch to improve effectiveness in budget execution through vigorous implementation of priority development programs,” he said.
Coloma assured that the government will “intensify efforts to address challenges posed by extrinsic factors such as among others a predicted severe El Niño scenario through the last quarter and into the first half of 2016, and the slowing growth of the global economy.”
“President Aquino is firmly committed to achieve inclusive growth through continuing investments in public infrastructure and human capital development anchored upon good governance,” he said.
In a separate statement, Palace spokesman Edwin Lacierda also noted these developments clearly show that “good governance is indeed good economics, and that reforms pave the way toward a more business- and investment-friendly environment.”
“Under the Aquino administration, the Philippines has increasingly strengthened its position as an important business hub, gaining the trust and confidence of international observers,” he said.
From being the “Sick Man of Asia,” the Philippines, according to Lacierda, is now seen as a “key emerging economy,” brimming with opportunities for Filipinos and foreign investors alike.
“From the beginning, President Aquino has placed an emphasis not just on growth but also on inclusivity. This is why we have focused on meaningfully investing in our country’s greatest resource, the Filipino people, and also why we have sought to partner with our neighbors toward a more robust and resilient regional economy,” he said.
Lacierda cited the recently concluded Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Manila where, he said, the government made inclusive growth the theme of its hosting year, and pushed for initiatives that would help support small businesses, among others.
“As always, the Aquino administration is committed to improving the lives of our citizens, and will remain focused on implementing reforms and programs that would bring about greater advancement for our country. Moving forward, we trust that the Filipino people will make the right choice, and vote for a candidate who will continue and further build on the gains of daang matuwid [straight path],” he added.