NEDA: Q3 GDP to be above 7%, to ‘exceed growth target’


As the release for the third quarter Philippine economic growth is anticipated in November, Socioeconomic Planning Director Arsenio Balisacan said that the third quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth is seen to go above 7 percent and “exceed targets” despite external global shocks that affect the country’s economy.

“There’s quite a bit of uncertainty out there, especially in the global front, for example [the speculated]US government shutdown. Notwithstanding, we expect to still exceed our own growth target of 6 to 7 percent for 2013,” Balisacan told The Manila Times through a text message.

“From the demand side, personal consumption and investment are likely to be the main drivers.  Government spending is expected to reinforce these two. From the supply side, industry, particularly manufacturing, and services are expected to lead growth for the full year,” said Balisacan, who is also the director general of the National Economic Development Authority.

“There are typhoons, the flood affected a bit, but maybe very marginal,” Balisacan said in a separate interview with reporters.

Emilio “Jun” Neri Jr., Bank of the Philippine Islands Lead Economist, said on his Twitter account that the third quarter GDP result will determine the sustainability of the country’s growth.

“The third quarter GDP [gross domestic product]of 2013 will be first of a series of tests on sustainability of Philippine growth momentum,” Neri said.

The GDP growth of the country is a measure of the country’s economic performance factoring in some factors such as financial stability, imports and exports of goods and services, employment, businesses both large and small scale, and policy measures among others.

Earlier, Neri said in the 2014 BPI Market Outlook that the country may go up and sustain 6 to 7 percent of GDP for the year and 2014, but he noted that the country is not doing “what needs to be done” in order to achieve 8 to 9 percent economic growth, which is the kind of growth the country needs to alleviate poverty and achieve inclusive growth.

“While we can sustain 6 percent to 7 percent, the likelihood that we will reduce poverty with 8-percent to 10-percent expansion for the next two years or so is not likely to happen, because we are not building the capacity to be able to grow that much,” he added.

The Philippines grew remarkably for the last two quarters with 7.8 percent growth recorded for the first quarter, and a slight decrease but still sustained growth to 7.5 percent for second quarter.

For the whole of 2012, the GDP posted a 6.3-percent growth, that led economists, analysts and the government targeting 6 to 7 percent growth for 2013, only to be broken when the country is performing above expectations at present. KRISTYN NIKA M. LAZO


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