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Saturday, February 24, 2024

Diokno: Latest numbers point to sustained economic growth

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Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said latest numbers from multilateral agencies point to a continued expansion of the domestic economy despite the headwinds mostly emanating from the external front.

The International Monetary Fund slightly increased its global growth forecast to 3.0 percent in 2023 due to a resilient first-quarter 2023 global growth driven by the services sector. For 2024, the IMF retained the growth outlook at 2.9 percent.

“Multilateral organizations either improved or retained their economic projections for the Philippines in 2023. In the latest outlook for the Philippine economy, the IMF and the World Bank upgraded their real GDP growth projections for the country to 6.2 percent and 6.0 percent, respectively,” Diokno said in a statement.

The Asian Development Bank and the ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office retained their projections at 6.0 percent and 6.2 percent, respectively.

“The strong growth outlook for the country is held up mainly by increased tourism activities, upbeat domestic demand, reopening of China and the better-than-expected global economy,” Diokno said.

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AMRO maintained its stronger growth forecast for the Philippines at 6.5 percent in 2024. It predicted that the Philippines would have the second highest growth among ASEAN+3, next to Vietnam at 7.6 percent, which was revised upward from 7.1 percent.

British financial firm Standard Chartered Bank also kept its 2023 growth forecast for the Philippines at 5.3 percent, slower than the actual 6.4 percent in the first three months, on the expected “soft” growth in the second half.

The economy grew by a 46-year high of 7.6 percent in 2022 on the back of reinvigorated economic activity due to the reopening of the economy to greater normalcy.

GDP grew by 6.4 percent in the first quarter of 2023, one of the fastest in Asia and outpacing those of other powerhouse countries in the region.

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