With the upbeat business and consumer sentiment, as well as sustained government capital expenditure, the Philippine economy posted a 7.8 percent GDP growth in the first quarter of 2013 from 6.5 percent the previous year, according to the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB).
The Q1 growth is the highest so far under the Aquino administration and also the third consecutive quarter of more than 7.0 percent GDP growth.
Secretary of Socioeconomic Planning of the Philippines Arsenio Balisacan notes that the country grew faster than China (7.7 percent), Indonesia (6 percent), Thailand (5.3 percent), and Vietnam (4.9 percent).
The robust growth was boosted by the strong performance of Manufacturing and Construction, backed up by Financial Intermediation and Trade.
On the demand side, increased consumer and government spending shored up by increased investments in Construction and Durable Equipment contributed to the highest quarterly GDP growth since the second quarter of 2010.
The continued inflow of remittances from our overseas workers accelerated the Net Primary Income from the Rest of the World to grow by 3.2 percent boosting the Gross National Income (GNI) growth to 7.1 percent from 5.7 percent in 2012.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, GDP is gaining momentum growing by 2.2 percent in the first quarter of 2013; GNI grew by 1.9 percent.
All major sectors posted positive growth in seasonally adjusted terms for the first quarter of 2013. In particular, the entire Agriculture sector posted a growth of 0.8 percent in the first quarter of 2013 from 0.4 percent the previous quarter.
However, Industry slowed down to 2.5 percent growth in the first quarter of 2013 from 4.0 percent in the previous quarter. But the Services sector accelerated to 2.2 percent in the first quarter of 2013 from 1.1 percent in the previous quarter as all its subsectors recorded positive growth. Positive growth in seasonally adjusted terms across major sectors has been resulting since the fourth quarter of 2010.
With the country’s projected population reaching 96.8 million in the first quarter of 2013, per capita GDP grew by 6.1 percent while per capita GNI grew by 5.3 percent and per capita Household Final Consumption Expenditure (HFCE) grew by 3.4 percent.