MANILA – Manufacturing output continued to show strong growth in November 2016 due to higher production of petroleum products, transport equipment, and food, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).

The Philippine Statistics Authority’s Monthly Integrated Survey of Selected Industries (MISSI) for November 2016 showed that the Volume of Production Index for manufacturing increased by 14.6 percent from last year’s 4.4 percent growth.

Likewise, the Value of Production Index for manufacturing grew by 10.6 percent, a significant rebound from the 2.2 percent decline last year.

“The manufacturing sector is expected to exhibit even stronger growth in December 2016 because of increased consumer demand during the Christmas season of 2016 compared to 2015. Looking ahead, we see the sector benefitting from strong private and public investments,” said Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia.

“Low inflation, low unemployment, and strong remittances will also continue to drive domestic demand, and will boost manufacturing in the Philippines,” he added.

For consumer goods, the food subsector registered double-digit growth in both production and sales due to favorable farming conditions. The food subsector registered a volume of production growth rate of 24.6 percent, and a value of production growth rate of 26.7 percent from a 10- percent decline in both volume and value last year.

For intermediate goods, production value of petroleum products has been growing steadily for three consecutive months, following consistent declines since 2015. The petroleum subsector posted 80.3 percent and 68.8 percent growth rates for volume and value of production, respectively.

For capital goods, the transport equipment subsector posted 40.4 percent growth in production volume and 39.1 percent growth in production value. This growth was supported by local demand for vehicles such as passenger cars, light trucks, and buses.

With this, Pernia said that the government must continue to pursue efforts that will boost the country’s growing manufacturing sector and provide quality jobs.

“One is through encouraging innovation in manufacturing so that we remain competitive with the rest of the world. Second, we need to minimize bureaucratic procedures and regulatory barriers to attract investments and to reduce the cost of doing business and expand production capacity,” he said

“Lastly, we must make sure that the technical skills of our labor force are in line with industry needs, and that opportunities to enhance technical competencies are available to people in the low-income and far-flung areas of our country,” Pernia added.