Balisacan sees faster growth in Q4
Ted P. Torres (The Philippine Star) - December 18, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan remains confident the Philippine economy will grow faster in the October to December period than in the previous quarter.

“Based on the available information, it (fourth quarter) is expectedly better than the third quarter,” he said in a yearend press briefing yesterday.

In the third quarter this year, the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew 5.3 percent, the slowest pace in nearly three years. On the average, the economy grew 5.8 percent in the first nine months of the year.

But to be able to achieve the lower end of the government’s target of 6.5 percent, the fourth quarter must expand by 8.2 percent.

“For the first three quarters of this year, the economy grew at an average of 5.8 percent. While this falls below our target of at least 6.5 percent, the Philippine economy remains among the brightest spots in the region,” Balisacan said, also the director general of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).

He said export performance in 2014 has been notable, especially for high-value products, and this bodes well for the economy as a whole. The growing household consumption indicates greater consumer confidence, which could boost growth.

In the first eight months of the year, growth of the industry sector has outpaced that of the services sector dating back since the second half of 2012.

“This is consistent with our strategy to promote the resurgence of industry and the manufacturing subsector, in particular. The services sector continues to be robust, especially the information technology business process management,” he reported.

The state economic planning czar forecast that the 6.8-million tourist arrivals target for 2014 would be met despite the setback experienced by the sector due to natural catastrophes such as Super Typhoon Yolanda.

Visitor arrivals for the eight months of the 2014 reached over 3.2 million, generating revenues of P144.4 billion.

Net foreign direct investments, which account for the actual flow of foreign investments, for the first nine months of the year, grew 61.3 percent.

Total approved investments for the first semester of 2014 grew 11 percent. For the full year, the target is eight percent.

BALISACAN ECONOMIC PLANNING SECRETARY ARSENIO M ECONOMY FIRST GREW NATIONAL ECONOMIC AND DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY QUARTER SUPER TYPHOON YOLANDA YEAR
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