The Philippine economy is projected to grow by 5.5 percent this year, driven by the growth in government spending, a report released by the First Metro Investment Corporation (FMIC) and the University of the Asia and the Pacific (UA and P) said. In the September issue of The Market Call released on Wednesday, FMIC and UA and P said Philippine economic growth in the third quarter of the year will likely reach 5.0 to 5.2 percent. For the fourth quarter of this year, FMIC and UA and P project the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) to grow by 6 percent. This would bring the full year GDP growth to 5.5 percent which is slightly below the government’s 6 to 7 percent target for this year. “Despite the weak July-August, we think the NG will accelerate further its spending on infrastructure and transportation for the rest of the year, and employment will have strong rebound in September,” the report said. The Philippine economy grew by 4.3 percent in the second quarter of this year. During the quarter, government expenditure contracted by 7.1 percent. FMIC and UA and P however expect government spending to accelerate in the second half of the year. “National Government took up the slack in July spending as it ramped up expenditures by 16.2 percent year-on-year in July through higher social protection and infrastructure outlays,” the report said. Aside from government spending, FMIC and UA and P also expect manufacturing and construction to drive growth. Transportation, storage, accommodations, food services and trade are also likely to drive growth. The report meanwhile said inflation could fall to below 4 percent in November as food prices decline.
Source: Philippines News Agency