Philippines: Exports and remittances rebound in December
February 10, 2011
In December, merchandise exports rose 25.3% over the same month the previous year to reach USD 4.2 billion. The robust reading came in well above the 11.5% expansion recorded in November and exceeded market analyst expectations that exports would increase 19.0%. The December increase in exports reflected a spectacular 107.1% expansion in exports of petroleum products (November: +176.11% yoy). In addition, exports of manufactured products surged sharply from a 9.3% expansion in November to rise 20.7% in December. Despite the stronger December reading, the moving three-month sum of exports reached only USD 13.1 billion, which was below the USD 14.3 billion recorded in the three months up to November. Nevertheless, recovery is getting entrenched as exports oscillate around the pre-crisis levels, with the peak of USD 13.3 billion registered in August 2008. Meanwhile, remittances from overseas Filipino workers, which represent approximately 10% of GDP, increased to USD 1.7 billion in December (November: USD 1.6 billion). In the full year 2010, remittances reached USD 18.8 billion in 2010, which was 8.1% above the level recorded in 2009.