NEDA chief sees faster Q3 growth


Economic growth likely picked up in the third quarter given improvements in exports, agriculture, investments and consumer spending, a Cabinet official said.

“[A result] faster than the first quarter and second quarter growth is something probably easier to say,” Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia told reporters on Thursday when asked about the upcoming release of July-September figures.

The economy grew by 6.5 percent in the second quarter, picking up from the 6.4 percent recorded in the first three months of the year.

Year to date growth, at 6.4 percent, remains below the government’s 6.5 percent to 7.5 percent target.
Third quarter results are scheduled to be released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) on November 16.

“Exports are very good, agriculture and also I think investments are also looking good. And then the OFW (overseas Filipino workers) remittances have also been very strong, which will boost the consumption spending,” Pernia said.

Merchandise exports were up 9.3 percent in August based on latest PSA data. Personal remittances sent home, meanwhile, posted 9.4 percent growth during the same month according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

Private sector analysts, meanwhile, have said that government spending should have improved for gross domestic product growth to accelerate.

“A strong fiscal performance is needed to keep GDP growth at around 6.5 percent in third quarter,” ING Bank Manila senior economist Joey Cuyegkeng said in September.

Last month, First Metro Investment Corp. and the University of Asia and the Pacific said Philippine economic growth was likely steady in third quarter amid continued domestic spending and export gains.

“Solid domestic demand, spurred by national government and consumer spending and rising external demand, appear to be in synch to ensure another 6.5 percent gross domestic product growth in third quarter,” the investment bank and private educational institution said in their joint “The Market Call” report.


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