Manufacturing, construction buoyed Central Visayas growth in 2018
Ehda M. Dagooc (The Freeman) - April 26, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Manufacturing and construction industries were identified as the fastest growing industries in Central Visayas for 2018.

Based on the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA-7) report presented yesterday on Region 7 economic performance for Central Visayas for 2018, construction grew by 14.3 percent, while manufacturing rose by 8.3 percent.

“We are happy that the industry sector grew the fastest, driven by the growth in manufacturing and construction. As we all know, these sub sectors [in the industry group] are labor-intensive. They are the major employers of our skilled and semi-skilled, and even unskilled workers,” said National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA-7) regional director Efren Carreon.

Among the provinces in the region, Cebu province had the most number of new construction projects in 2018, followed by Bohol, Negros Oriental, then Siquijor.

Growth-wise, Bohol had the highest increase in number of construction starts at 42 percent followed by Negros Oriental with almost 40 percent increase.

Carreon said there were several factors that pulled up the performance of construction in 2019, such as the high demand for residential and commercial spaces and the government’s build-build-build program.

Bureau of Customs BOC) record showed that seven of the region’s top 20 importers included; steel manufacturers, cement factories, a hardware store, and a paint manufacturer—all construction related businesses.

Meanwhile, the Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP) of Central Visayas in 2018, accelerated to 7.6 percent, from the 5.2 percent growth in 2017. The growth is driven by the strong services sector.

Of the 7.6 growth rate of the region’s economy, services contributed the most with 3.9 percentage points followed by industry with 3.6 percentage points; and agriculture, hunting, forestry and fishing at 0.1 percentage point.

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