Philippines: GDP outperforms rest of Asia in Q1
May 30, 2013
In the first quarter, GDP expanded 7.8% over the same period the year before. The reading came in well above the 7.1% rise observed in the fourth quarter (previously reported: +6.8% year-on-year) and overshot market expectations, which had expected growth to slow down to 6.0%. Economic growth in the first quarter beat China's Q1 growth rate and was therefore among the best performers in Asia. Economic growth in the beginning of the year was mostly underpinned by strong domestic demand.
Private consumption slowed from a revised 6.2% increase in the fourth quarter (previously reported: +6.9% yoy) to a 5.1% rise in Q1 2013, partially reflecting slower growth in remittances. Government consumption rose a strong 13.2% (Q4 2012: +9.5% yoy), while fixed investment expanded 16.8% in the first quarter (Q4: +19.7% yoy). In addition, GDP largely benefited from a positive shift in inventories.
On the external sector, exports of goods and services contracted 7.0% in the first quarter, contrasting the 8.6% increase observed in Q4. Simultaneously, imports grew 1.6% (Q4: +8.0% yoy). As a result, the external sector's net contribution to overall economic growth deteriorated from plus 0.7 percentage points in the fourth quarter to minus 4.1 percentage points in the first.
The government expects growth of between 6.0% and 7.0% in 2013 and between 6.5% and 7.5% in 2014. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panellists expect economic growth to reach 6.0 % this year, which is up 0.1 percentage points from last month's forecast. For 2014 panellists expect growth to slow to 5.8%.