Factory output declines for 10th straight month

(The Philippine Star) - December 6, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Manufacturing output continued to decelerate in October, marking the 10th consecutive month of decline both in volume and value, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported yesterday. 

The year-on-year Volume of Production Index (VoPI) declined by 3.7 percent, while the Value of Production Index (VaPI) declined by 4.3 percent, reversing the positive growth in the same month last year.  

Declines were seen in the output of of the following commodity groups: electrical machinery, petroleum products, miscellaneous manufactures, furniture and fixtures, basic metals, textiles, non-metallic products, rubber and plastic products, and transport equipment. 

The National and Economic Development Authority (NEDA) said sustaining the implementation of construction-related activities will help drive growth in the manufacturing sector. 

NEDA said the extension in the validity of the 2019 national budget and the timely passage of the 2020 General Appropriations Act (GAA) would be crucial for this. 

“Despite manufacturing’s performance, business and consumer outlook remains positive with the anticipation of higher consumer spending during the holiday season, a much favorable macroeconomic condition, and a likely recovery in government spending on infrastructure,” said NEDA Undersecretary Adoracion Navarro. 

She said accelerating the implementation of the infrastructure development programs and continued investment on human capital development in the remaining months of 2019 is critical to achieve the national government’s targeted disbursement. 

“We are glad that the Department of Public Works and Highways and other infrastructure-focused agencies, the Department of Education, and the Department of Social Welfare and Development have signified commitment to accelerate their respective disbursements for the rest of the year,” Navarro said.

The NEDA official also said fasttracking the passage of the Corporate Income Tax and Incentives Rationalization Act, and the proposed amendments to the Foreign Investments Act, Public Service Act and Retail Trade Act will help eliminate policy uncertainties and enable investment and business expansions in the country.

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