th images menu user export search eye clock list list2 arrow-left untitled twitter facebook googleplus instagram cross photos entrep-logo-svg

PH exceeds expectations, posts 6.9% GDP growth in Q1

Relative to other Asian economies, the Philippines is now the fastest growing economy, followed by China and Vietnam.
By Elyssa Christine Lopez |

Services sector
BOOMING. The industry and services sector drove the economy’s growth to outstanding levels, contributing 8.7% and 7.9% respectively, more than 2% improvement over the same period last year. 

 

 

MANILA, Philippines – Exceeding expectations, the Philippines posted its highest gross domestic product (GDP) growth since the last quarter of 2014, as it welcomed the year with a 6.9% growth.

 

This makes the country the fastest growing economy among its selected ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian) neighbors, followed by China, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Malaysia, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) reported on Thursday, May 19.

 

Relative to other Asian economies that have already released their first quarter 2016 GDP growth data, the Philippines is now the fastest growing economy, followed by China (6.7%) and Vietnam (5.5%), Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said in a statement.

 

 

Related: Q4 GDP growth revised

 

“We’re pleased to be turning over a strong and stable economy onto the next administration. We underscore the need for policy consistency and for sustained business confidence,” acting NEDA Director-General Emmanuel F. Esguerra said in a press conference, as tweeted on the agency’s Twitter account.

 

The industry and services sector drove the economy’s growth to outstanding levels, contributing 8.7% and 7.9% respectively, more than 2% improvement over the same period last year.

 

However, the agricultural sector continued to perform poorly, contracting to 4.4%. The El Niño phenomenon contributed to the consistent poor performance of the industry. Nonetheless, food prices remain unchanged due to “good management of food stock.”

 

 

Challenges ahead

 

 

GDP infographic
Infographic from the National Economic and Development Authority

 

 

Esguerra noted that the agriculture and fisheries sector will continue to reel from the impact of El Niño, “but we must start preparing for La Niña. It will be up to the incoming administration to flesh out details of La Niña preparedness plan,” Esguerra added.

 

On the demand side, construction grew faster at 12%, while public and private construction posted significant improvement at 39% and 7.1%, respectively.

 

However, the volatile condition of the world market has already caught up to the economy with the slower growth of exports at 6.6%.  Despite such, strong domestic demand is expected to offset the weak conditions.

 

 

Continuity

Overall, Esguerra said the economy is on track to meet its full-year GDP target of 6.8 to 7.8% for 2016 as businesses’ confidence has been “encouraging.”

 

While election spending has been historically proven to contribute in the economy’s GDP, its impact is yet to be quantified in the first quarter report and will most likely bear fruit in the following quarters.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

 

“The economic performance of our country from 2010 to the first quarter of 2016 remains the highest growth average recorded by the country that is backed by sound macroeconomic fundamentals,” Esguerra added.

 

From 2010 to 2015, the economy’s GDP average is at 6.3%, posting its highest growth in the first quarter of 2013 at 7.7%.

 

“We’re hopeful that the economic agenda of the incoming administration will continue and build on the gains of the last five years,” Esguerra said.

 

Esguerra said in a statement that the country should not miss the current second wave of foreign investments into the region, especially that the country has 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,” he noted.

 

Thus, it is important to demonstrate that the country’s 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,” he said.

 

Related: Duterte’s 8-point economic plan revealed

 

“Also, agreeing on a long-term vision for the country would help ensure that policy decisions are coherent, consistent, and on the right track toward 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,” he said.

 

Related: What do Filipinos want by 2040?

 

Lacierda added that President Benigno Aquino III has often articulated this administration’s guiding principle: "to leave the country in a far better state than when he first found it."

 

"With our peers in the international community having acknowledged our progress, it is now up to the next administration to build on the gains we have recently achieved—so that they may further redound to our nation’s improvement, for the benefit of generations to come," said Lacierda.

 

*****

Elyssa Christine Lopez is Entrepreneur.com.ph's editorial assistant/ staff writer. Follow her on Twitter@elyssalopz.

Latest Articles

Vice President Leni Robredo Launches New Program to Fight Poverty

The program will help create jobs and develop skills of local residents.

byPaolo Chua for TownandCountry.ph | October 22, 2017 00:00:00

PH’s Leading Online Stock Broker Reports “Possible Breach” Affecting Client Data

But COL Financial assures clients of the integrity of their account balances and stock positions

byEntrepreneur Staff | October 21, 2017 11:00:00

(Infographic) The Future According to Elon Musk

Plans and predictions for our world and beyond, according to the man behind SpaceX

byEmily Conklin | October 21, 2017 08:00:00

Don't Be Like the Woman Who Poisoned the Office Coffee Pot -- Follow These 10 Steps to Conquer Work Stress

Essential principles to help you get grounded, so you feel confident, calm and secure when things...

byMarianne Clyde | October 21, 2017 06:00:00

The 4 Mindsets You Need to Adopt to Succeed

How you approach your work is more important to your success than what specifically you're working...

byTimothy Sykes | October 21, 2017 02:00:00

This Easy Psychological Hack Could Increase Your Savings

Apparently, emotions play a huge role when it comes to financial health

byKhatrina Bonagua for FHM.com.ph | October 21, 2017 00:00:00

How Much Money Are College Entrance Exam Review Centers Making?

A close look at revenues and profits of MSA Group and AHEAD Learning Systems

byPauline Macaraeg | October 20, 2017 14:00:00

Which PH Tycoons Are Partnering with Their Potential Disruptors?

PwC’s 2017 Philippine Startup Survey says big businesses are tying up with innovative startups

byLorenzo Kyle Subido | October 20, 2017 13:00:00

The Most Common Habit of Self-Made Millionaires

Develop this habit if you sincerely want to retire as a self-made millionaire

byBrian Tracy | October 20, 2017 08:00:00

Sorry, Millennials -- You Are Not Entrepreneurs

Younger entrepreneurs should look to their older counterparts for guidance to be successful

byDavid Meltzer | October 20, 2017 06:00:00

Transform Vulnerability Into Your Wonder Woman Superpower

Being more human may just be the answer to leading superhuman disruption

byDr. Patti Fletcher | October 20, 2017 02:00:00

With 100 Stores and Counting, This Restaurant Proves That "Lutong Bahay" Will Never Go Out of Style

Kuya J opened 100 restaurants in just two years

byTrixie Zabal-Mendoza for Yummy.ph | October 20, 2017 00:00:00