THE Philippines’ total agricultural trade reached $5.09 billion in the second quarter (Q2) of 2019, slightly lower than the $5.091 billion recorded in the same period last year, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).
The statistics agency said total agricultural exports went up, while imports decreased during the April-to-June period.
Total agricultural export revenue was pegged at $1.74 billion, a 10.5-percent increase from $1.57 billion in the second quarter of 2018. Its total share to exports rose by 0.8 percent.
The country’s total export revenue for all commodities amounted to $17.80 billion, up 1.8 percent from last year’s $17.49 billion.
On the other hand, agricultural imports showed a 4.7-percent decline to $3.35 billion from $3.52 billion. The share of agricultural imports to total imports, which was at $28.32 billion, declined by 0.2 percent during the period.
PSA said Japan posted a trade surplus of $272.42 million among the Philippines’ major trading partners.
However, trade deficits were showed in other major trading partners including Australia with $299.03 million, the United States with $423.35 million, Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) members with $964.28 million, and European Union member-states with $127.65 million, the agency said.
Topping the agricultural commodity export value were edible fruits and nuts, and peel of citrus fruit melons, which accounted for the largest share of 40 percent, valued at $693.89 million.
Coming in second was the animal or vegetable oils and their cleavage products, prepared edible fats, and animal or vegetable waxes with 17.3 percent share to total agricultural exports or a value of $300.75 million.
This was followed by preparation of vegetables, fruits, nuts or other parts of plants valued at $135.40 million or a 7.4-percent share to total agricultural exports.
For imports, cereals accounted for the largest share of 21 percent valued at $703.67 million, with the US as the major buyer of the commodity.
According to PSA, Malaysia and Vietnam were the Philippines’ top trading partners among Asean member-states during the second quarter of 2019.
Major agricultural commodities exported to Asean member-states were tobacco and manufactured tobacco substitutes ($65.26 million), animal or vegetable fats and oils and their cleavage products, prepared edible fats and animal or vegetable waxes ($43.83 million).