Press Conference on the 2016 Q1 Performance of the Philippine Economy
Destiny Function Room, Elements at Eton Centris Building, EDSA, Quezon City
19 May 2016, 10:00 AM
The 6.9-percent growth in the first quarter of 2016 showed the continuing high-growth trajectory of our country’s economy. The growth is above market expectations given average consensus forecast of 6.6 percent for the first quarter. This robust performance of the economy increases the likelihood of achieving the official GDP growth projection of 6.8 to 7.8 percent for full-year 2016, despite the weak agriculture and fishery sector. Also, among 11 selected Asian economies that have already released their growth data for the quarter, the Philippines was the fastest-growing economy, followed by China at 6.7 percent, Vietnam at 5.5 percent, Indonesia at 4.9 percent, and Malaysia at 4.2 percent.
The pulp and paper industry, through the Philippine Paper Manufacturers Association, Inc. (PPMAI), collaborates with DTI and other government agencies in order to promote the sector’s competitiveness.
STATEMENT ARSENIO M. BALISACAN Economic Planning Secretary and NEDA Director-General Press Conference on the 2015 Fourth Quarter and Full-Year Performance of the Philippine Economy Destiny Function Room, Elements at Eton Centris Bldg., EDSA, Quezon City 28 January 2016, 10:00 AM Ladies and gentlemen, members of the media, my colleagues in government, good morning. The 6.3-percent […]
STATEMENT SECRETARY ARSENIO M. BALISACAN Economic Planning Secretary and NEDA Director-General Press Conference on the 2015 Third Quarter Performance of the Philippine Economy Destiny Function Room, Elements at Eton Centris Bldg., EDSA, Quezon City 26 November 2015, 10:00 AM Ladies and gentlemen, members of the media, good morning. The 6.0-percent growth in the Philippines’ real […]
"As has been the case in Europe over the past 20 years-and in the emerging world, too-the smaller countries have shown the way in spurring economic reforms and laying down the groundwork for steady growth. In assembling a future road map, we might do worse than focusing on the P Group of emerging market economies such as Peru, Paraguay, Poland and the Philippines," OMFIF managing director David Marsh said in a commentary titled "Message for the future: Peruse the P Group" released on Oct. 12.
However, after the political crisis in the 1980s, the peso only started to stabilize in 1992 (with the central bank maintaining the same policy of pegging the peso to the dollar via a dirty float), and the Philippines was able to return to the international capital markets only around 1993.
While the "Asian miracle" was boosting the economies of its neighbors, which encouraged them to borrow, the Philippines was labeled "the sick man of Asia." In the early 1980s, confidence in the Marcos regime deteriorated, and it was made worse by the assassination of Benigno Aquino in 1983; the peso plunged 30% in 1983, and a further 50% in 1984.
As of September 1998, the Makati area still had a low vacancy rate of 5.8% compared to Kuala Lumpur's 13.6%, Jakarta's 20.0%, and Bangkok's 28.7%.
Bank lending to the real estate sector in the Philippines was lower at 15-20% (12.4% as of the second quarter of 1997, and 13.8% as of the third quarter of 1998(7))of total assets in 1997, compared to other countries such as Malaysia and Thailand, both at 30-40%.
In 1996, 20 of the largest 30 conglomerates in South Korea had a rate of return on invested capital (ROIC) below the cost of capital.
In the Philippines, the bulk of bank credits were given to productive sectors of the economy such as manufacturing.
The Philippines and other emerging economies such as Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and Poland are deemed the "brighter spots" in the global economy given their resilience from external shocks, according to the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum (OMFIF).
The writer believes that this is very much understated and may be one result of having a base year that is 13 years old.(11)
Top export earners such as semiconductors and electronic microcircuits (+7.8%) and finished electrical machinery (+22.1%) continued to grow, but garments (-0.9%) suffered a slight decline.
As Table 2 shows, 39% of the Philippines' exports in 1997 went to the the United States, which is experiencing strong economic growth; in contrast to about 14-19% for the the U.S.
Thus, the direct contribution of remittances to the economy can be more than double that of electronics exports.
In summary, the Philippines was more resilient to the Asian crisis compared to its Asian neighbors, since most of the loans went to the productive sectors of the economy, its financial system was more robust, and available credit to businesses did not contract to the same extent as its neighbors.
We are pleased to be turning over a strong and stable economy onto the next administration. We have achieved significant socioeconomic progress over the last five years with the return of political and economic stability, which we hope the incoming administration will build on. We should not miss the current second wave of foreign investments into the region, especially now that we have finally become an investment destination of choice. It must be noted that part of the reason the Philippines was left behind economically by its neighbors is that the Philippines was largely ignored by the first wave of foreign investments into the region during the mid-1980s due to political instability. Therefore, it is important to demonstrate that our democratic institutions are mature enough to withstand political transitions. That the country was able to hold a generally peaceful and credible elections — aided by active citizen engagement and leading to wide public acceptance of the results — is a strong indication of much improved democratic institutions. We also have to underscore the need for policy consistency, which is important for sustained business confidence. Also, agreeing on a long-term vision for the country would help ensure that policy decisions are coherent, consistent, and on the right track towards realizing people’s aspirations even as political leaders change. We hope that our country will continue and improve the gains of the economy in the years to come.