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

  • Page Views 1174
  • 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

    • 29 July 2021
      3 days ago No comment

      With multiple medals, Tokyo 2020 an Olympic banner year for Philippines

      The Philippines will finish with multiple medals in the ongoing Olympics. This means that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will represent a banner year for the country. The Philippine Daily Inquirer observed that this will be the first time since the Los Angeles 1932 Games that the Philippines will win ...

    • 22 July 2021
      1 week ago No comment

      Lolit Solis hints at Kris Aquino’s possible run in 2022

      Will Kris Aquino run in the national elections in 2022? This was the question of veteran entertainment journalist Lolit Solis who promised to vote for Kris should she decide to run in the national elections next year. But Lolit advised Kris not to run for mayor in Quezon City ...

    • 22 July 2021
      1 week ago No comment

      Philippines administers 15.6 million COVID-19 shots

      The Philippines has administered 15.6 million doses against the COVID-19 virus. Harry Roque, spokesperson of President Rodrigo Duterte, shared this number in a media briefing Wednesday (July 21). Of the 15.6 million does administered by the government, Roque said 10,585,261 million persons got their first dose. As well, 5,031,301 ...

    • 17 July 2021
      2 weeks ago No comment

      First Nations peoples condemn tweet on Church burnings

      At a press conference in Vancouver, Pentecostal assistant minister Jenn Allan-Riley, a 60s scoop survivor whose mother attended residential school, called for the wave of church arsons to stop. She adds that “Burning down churches is not in solidarity with us Indigenous people. As I said, we do not ...

    • 17 July 2021
      2 weeks ago No comment

      Paki-Ayos: A New Service for Filipinos in Canada

      Paki-Ayos Services Inc. will do errands for you in the Philippines Do you need something done in the Philippines, but air fare, accommodations, and pasalubong cost too much for you to go back home? A new service, Paki-Ayos, is here to help. Forget about going on a very expensive ...

    %d bloggers like this: