The National Economic and Development Authority is optimistic of the country’s trade performance for the rest of the year considering thriving exports and trade linkages, especially to Europe and East Asia.
NEDA-attached agency, the Philippine Statistics Authority, reported that total trade grew to USD11.7 billion in April 2017, with the 12.1 percent growth in exports offsetting the 0.1 percent decline in imports.
“For exports, East Asia and the EU remain the top destinations of our products, accounting for 62.3 percent of total export receipts,” said Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia.
Exports to EU and East Asia grew by 36 percent and 10 percent in April 2017, respectively.
“Despite global uncertainties, we remain upbeat that the country will sustain the strong performance of export and trade growth recorded in the first quarter,” the Cabinet official said.
Meanwhile, sales of exports to Hong Kong (36.8%), China (26.4%), South Korea (18.9%), and Taiwan (26.4%) posted double-digit growth while exports to Japan fell (-16.6%).
“We aim to deepen our engagement with our neighbors in the Asia-Pacific region to enhance trade and investment links,” said Pernia.
He recognized positive contributions of trade connections and cited China as an example, where merchandise exports increased by 27.7 percent from October 2016 to April 2017 compared with the 7.1 percent decline from January to September 2016.
“Also worth noting is the tripling of exports to the UAE and India in April. This was the third month that receipts to UAE tripled, and the second month for India,” he added.
Exports to UAE and India grew by 286.4 percent and 204.1 percent, respectively.
“We see an opportunity to strengthen bilateral ties with India as it becomes a major player in the global economy. Their large consumer base can be an important market for Philippine products,” he added.
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