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Robust 2013 second-quarter economic expansion

tempo editorial sept92013

The Philippine economy posted a robust growth of 7.5% in the 2nd quarter of 2013, bringing to 7.6% the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth in 1st semester of 2013, and confirming the country’s higher growth trajectory and its position as best performer among economies in Southeast Asia. It sustained the growth of above 7% for four quarters in a row, defying a trend of regional slowdown. The growth was well within the target of 7% to 8% GDP, an indicator of economic health, as outlined in Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016, the NEDA said.

Increase in government spending, revival of manufacturing, and growth in consumer spending fuel the healthy growth figures, the NSCB reported, citing as key factors the resilient services sector, which grew 7.4% or 57.9% of GDP, and the robust industry sector, which expanded 10.3% or 32.7% of GDP. Trade and real estate supported the services sector; trade grew 7.3%, while real estate, rental and business activities posted 9.5% growth, indicating an expansion of information technology-business process outsourcing sector.

The 2nd-quarter growth rate was on a par with China’s and surpassed those of our Southeast Asian neighbors – Indonesia (5.8%), Vietnam (5%), Malaysia (4.3%), Singapore (3.8%), and Thailand (2.8%). Income from abroad such as remittances from Filipino workers, grew 6.8% in 2nd quarter, the NSCB noted.

The growth signals a rebalancing economy, moving from consumption-driven to investment-led and industrialized, that will create jobs for Filipinos, the NEDA said. With strong macroeconomic fundamentals, the country was able to manage risks resulting from stock market and peso volatilities. While other economies decelerate due to global slowdown, the Philippine economy is able to withstand external shocks; inflation is stable, interest rates are low and current account strong to cover 12 months imports, the NEDA noted.

We congratulate H.E. President Benigno S. Aquino III, Vice President Jejomar C. Binay, Department of Finance Secretary Cesar V. Purisima, National Economic and Development Authority Director General Arsenio M. Balisacan, National Statistical and Coordination Board Director General Dr. Jose Ramon Albert, for their coordinative undertakings to sustain the momentum of growth and make it more inclusive to benefit majority of Filipinos in our Republic of the Philippines. CONGRATULATIONS AND MABUHAY!