IMF hikes growth forecasts for Philippines for ’16, ‘17

  • Page Views 314
  • The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised upwards its growth projections for the Philippines this year and next year due to strong domestic output in the first half of 2016 brought largely by robust expansion in consumption and investments.

    In a statement issued after the conclusion of the lender’s Article IV consultation with the Philippines, IMF hiked to 6.4 percent its 2016 growth projection for the country while the 2017 figure was upped to 6.7 percent.

    These were previously at six percent for 2016 and 6.2 percent for next year.

    The lender said its outlook on the economy “remains favorable despite external headwinds.”

    In the first half this year, the domestic economy grew, as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), by 6.9 percent, driven by strong investment and consumption, which countered the weak demand from its trading partners.

    Inflation remained benign, with the average in the first eight months this year at 1.5 percent, below the government’s two to four percent target for 2015-18, due mainly to lower oil and food prices.

    IMF also noted the drop in unemployment rate to 6.3 percent of GDP in 2015 and to six percent in the first of this year.

    It said the country’s external position remained robust last year, resulting in a current account surplus equivalent to about 2.9 percent of GDP and foreign exchange reserves hitting $80.67 billion, which has a cover of 10.3 months’ worth of imports of goods and payments of services and income.

    “Risks to the outlook are titled to the downside,” it said, citing its expectations for the current government to be able to respond to challenges “with suitable policies” because of the country’s strong fundamentals and amply policy space.

    The lender lauded the government for sustaining the strong macroeconomic management but noted that “favorable macroeconomic performance had not led to corresponding improvements in poverty reduction, inequality, and unemployment.”

    It said the Duterte administration “has an opportunity to put the economy on a higher and more equitable growth path.”

    “Directors encouraged efforts to increase investments in infrastructure and human capital, improve target of social spending, enhance competitiveness and foreign direct investment, and making the financial system deeper and more inclusive,” it said.

    The current government’s plan to increase the government deficit target to three percent of domestic output starting in 2017 compared to the two percent in the past administration got the support of the IMF, which cited that this will hinge on the stable public debt to GDP ratio.

    IMF said the higher deficit will fund additional infrastructure and social spending and is not seen to erode fiscal stability.

    The IMF said legislative measures that would give the central bank authority to issue bills and increase its capitalization were encouraged.

    “Directors also welcomed the focus on financial deepening and inclusion as essential elements of the authorities’ inclusive growth strategy. They emphasized the importance of strengthening the AML (anti-money laundering) framework, including to make tax evasion a predicate crime,” it added.(J. Santiago, PNA/Interaksyon)

    Share

    New Posts Recently publish post More

    • 24 March 2017
      10 hours ago No comment

      Summer Trip to Corregidor

      Located at the entrance of Manila Bay, Isla ng Corregidor was identified by the Spaniards as a strategic defense location when they arrived in the Philippines in the 16th century. They named the tadpole-shaped island Island of the Corrector since this was the place where all ships entering Manila ...

    • 24 March 2017
      13 hours ago No comment

      ABS-CBN involved in Enforcement Effort Against Sellers of Pirated DVDs of ABS-CBN Content

      DALY CITY, CALIFORNIA – Six stores selling DVDs in Toronto and Montreal surrendered last March 7 and 8 over a thousand pirated DVDs of ABS-CBN content.  Included in the enforcement effort were the following stores: Bulacan Fashion, Bon-Bon, Waynes Collectibles, a store at 23 Glen Watford Drive in Dragon Centre, ...

    • 24 March 2017
      16 hours ago No comment

      Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the attack in London, United Kingdom

      The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on the attack in London, United Kingdom (U.K.) “We strongly condemn today’s attack in London. I was shocked and saddened to learn of the innocent people who were killed and injured as a result of this cowardly attack. “Canada ...

    • 23 March 2017
      1 day ago No comment

      Impeachment against Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte belittled

      Pantaleon Alvarez, who is the Speaker of the House of Representatives, expressed confidence the impeachment complaint filed against Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte by the Magdalo party list, represented by Congressman Gary Alejano, will not prosper. Alvarez noted that not only the charges were fabricated and had no evidence to ...

    • 23 March 2017
      1 day ago No comment

      World Happiness Report: Norway tops list, Canada is 7th, Philippines ranks 72nd

      A new report shows Norway is the happiest country on Earth. Norway jumped to the top slot in the World Happiness Report released on March 20 although prices of oil,  a key part of its economy, are falling. Income in the United States has gone up over the past ...

    %d bloggers like this: