“Despite the slow 5.9 percent full year GDP (gross domestic product) growth rate for 2019, due to the delayed passage of the 2019 budget, we still recognize this administration’s determination to sustain the strong momentum of our economic growth,” Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said in a statement.
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Palace unfazed by slower economic growth
Cecille Suerte Felipe, Alexis Romero (The Philippine Star) - January 24, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang yesterday expressed confidence that the country would sustain its growth momentum following the sluggish full-year economic expansion. 

“Despite the slow 5.9 percent full year GDP (gross domestic product) growth rate for 2019, due to the delayed passage of the 2019 budget, we still recognize this administration’s determination to sustain the strong momentum of our economic growth,” Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said in a statement. 

“The government will continue its economic policies and programs for the betterment of the Philippines and every Filipino as part of President Duterte’s legacy,” Andanar added. 

He said the 6.4 percent growth in the fourth quarter proved that reforms could be attained through political will. 

Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo downplayed the slower full-year growth and insisted that economic managers are doing a good job. 

“If it goes down, there is no way but up, so why worry?” Panelo said. “I think we have competent economic managers. They’re doing their job very well.”

 Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian said the budget impasse at the start of 2019 delayed the implementation of the country’s vital infrastructure projects even as the  economy grew in the last quarter last year.

Gatchalian said data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) show that the  economy slowed to 5.9 percent in 2019, which is below the government’s narrower target range of six to 6.5 percent.

“Despite this, I’m optimistic that our economy will be able to bounce back this year, supported by the timely approval of the 2020 budget,” he said.

GDP MARTIN ANDANAR
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