• March trade gap widens by over 30% from yr-earlier, Feb

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    The Philippines’ trade deficit in March widened by more than a third of its size a year earlier and in February, with demand for imports by a robust economy outpacing foreign markets’ absorption of the country’s exports, official data showed on Thursday.

    The balance of trade in goods for the Philippines in March “registered a deficit of $2.302 billion, higher than the $1.747-billion trade deficit in the same month last year,” the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said in a statement.

    Based on these figures, the trade deficit in March grew 31.8 percent from the year-ago level. Compared with the $1.76-billion trade gap in February, the March balance contracted by 30.2 percent.

    Exports in March rose 21 percent year-on-year to $5.57 billion, while imports surged 24 percent to $7.88 billion, data from the PSA showed.

    In the first quarter of 2017, the country’s trade deficit expanded 19.2 percent to $6.54 billion from $5.48 billion a year earlier.

    MAYVELIN U. CARABALLO

     

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