• Melo Acuna

Philippine economic dips by 11.5%

COVID-19 risk management will improve the economy and help people recover

MANILA – The country’s economy dipped deeper more than expected during the third quarter of the year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, the country’s economic managers said the fall was cushioned by the gradual opening of the economy after one of the world’s longest lockdowns. The stringent anti-COVID-19 measures resulted in the country’s first ever recession in about three decades during the year’s second quarter.

The country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) fell by 11.5% in the third quarter from a year earlier. Earlier, economists polled by international news agencies believed the economy to fall to 9.8% after they revised contraction figures of 16.9% during Q2.

However, GDP expanded what is described as seasonally adjusted 8% quarter-on-quarter in the July-September period as the Duterte administration steadily eased restrictions from mid-May to improve the people’s plight. It’s been observed it was a marked improvement of what has been earlier reported15.2% contraction in the second quarter.

Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendric Chua said the economy is “on the mend.” He read in a virtual press conference a prepared joint statement signed three of them with Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III, Budget and Management Secretary Wendel E. Avisado.

The improvement in the economic activity coupled with moderate inflation, eased the pressure on the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to provide additional cash.

It was earlier reported the central bank has cut the benchmark interest rates by a sum of 175 basis points this year as the government launched a P165.5 billion or US$3.4 billion) worth of emergency relief measures to improve health services and help businesses thrive.

The signs and symptoms are still there that the Philippine economy would contract this year as it strives to control the spread of the dreaded virus as resurgence in cases have been noted in both the United States of America and Europe. Such conditions threaten the world economy.

It was earlier reported that World Bank, which earlier described the Philippines as among the world fasted growing economies, to dip to 6.9% this year. Earlier the government also said a modest contraction would take place from 4.5% and 6.5%,

It is noteworthy to say the Philippines ranks second in the number of Corona-19 positive cases. (Melo M. Acuña)

Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendric Chua. (NEDA file Photo)

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