(Philippine Statistics Authority)
The Philippine economy grew by 7.1% year-on-year in the third quarter of 2021 despite the stringent quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila and other urban centers due to the Delta-driven surge in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases.
The country's economic managers said this was among the highest third quarter growths in the ASEAN and East Asian region. Year-to-date growth is currently at 4.9%.
"With strong third quarter growth and overall performance in 2021, we are on track to reach the high-end of our 4% to 5% growth target for 2021," Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick T. Chua, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III and Budget officer-in-charge Tina Rose Marie L. Canda said in a joint statement Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2021.
The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said the main contributors to the growth, with their corresponding increases, were: wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles, 6.4%; manufacturing, 6.3%; and construction, 16.8%.
Among the major economic sectors, industry and services posted positive growth rates of 7.9% and 8.2%, respectively. Agriculture, forestry and fishing posted a contraction of -1.7%.
On the demand side, Household Final Consumption Expenditure (HFCE) grew by 7.1%. The following items also expanded: gross capital formation (GCF), 22%; government final consumption expenditure (GFCE), 13.6%; exports, 9%; and imports, 13.2%.
Net primary income (NPl) from the rest of the world plunged by -52.3% while gross national income (GNl) posted a growth of 2.8 percent during the period.
The third-quarter growth was up from the -11.6 percent in the same period in 2020.
On a seasonally adjusted quarter-on-quarter basis, the economy expanded by 3.8%.
"While observing the health protocols, our people continued to work and businesses continued to operate," the economic team said.
Daily COVID-19 cases peaked at around 26,000 on Sept. 11. These fell to less than 1,800 last Nov. 4 as government stepped up vaccinations. From July to September, about 19 million Filipinos were fully vaccinated. On Nov. 4, the Philippines exceeded 1.1 million jabs in one day.
"This careful balancing between COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 needs led to the continued expansion of most sectors," the team said.
"To further sustain our growth this year and next year, the government will further accelerate the vaccination program, reopen to alert level 1 in January 2022, and maximize the use of the 2021 budget," they added. (Ventures Cebu)