The economy bucked the lingering impact of COVID-19 pandemic in 2021 as it grew 5.6 percent following a contraction of 9.6 percent in 2020, on the strength of industry and services sectors, the Philippines Statistics Authority said Thursday.
This exceeded the 5-percent to 5.5-percent estimate of the interagency Development Budget Coordinating Committee for the entire year.
“This growth performance was much faster than most analyst forecasts, making the country’s expansion among the highest in the region. This sends a strong signal that we are on track to rapid recovery despite the impact of typhoon Odette,” the government’s economic managers said in a joint statement.
“The door to our economic recovery is now fully open. The numbers for 2021 show an economy primed to break out,” they said.
National statistician Dennis Mapa said in an online briefing the economy rebounded strongly in the fourth quarter after it rebounded by 7.7 percent, from a contraction of 8.3 percent a year ago, amid the devastating impact of the pandemic.
Economic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua said the expansion last year was achieved despite the impact of typhoon Odette in December.
Chua also said with this performance, the economy was on track to a “rapid and resilient recovery” in the months ahead. He said the full-year growth was among the highest in the region.
The PSA said the main contributors to the fourth-quarter growth were manufacturing with 7.2 percent; wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles, 7.4 percent; and construction, 18.5 percent. The same industries also contributed the most to the annual growth: manufacturing, 8.6 percent; wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles, 4.3 percent; and construction, 9.8 percent.
Among the major economic sectors, agriculture, forestry, and fishing, industry and services all posted positive growths in the fourth quarter with 1.4 percent, 9.5 percent, and 7.9 percent, respectively. On an annual basis, Industry and services registered positive growths of 8.2 percent and 5.3 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, agriculture, forestry, and fishing posted a contraction of -0.3 percent in 2021.
On the demand side, household final consumption expenditure grew by 7.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2021.
The following items also recorded growths: government final consumption expenditure, 7.4 percent; gross capital formation, 12.6 percent; exports, 8.3 percent; and imports, 13.7 percent.
On an annual basis, HFCE grew by 4.2 percent, GFCE, 7.0 percent; GCF, 19.0 percent; Exports, 7.8 percent; and Imports, 12.9 percent.
Net primary income from the rest of the world grew by 15.0 percent, enabling the gross national income to grow by 8.0 percent in the fourth quarter of 2021. On an annual basis, NPl declined by -50.2 percent while GNI grew by 1.6 percent.
The 2021 GDP growth also surpassed the International Monetary Fund’s estimate of a revised 4.6-percent expansion that was announced on Wednesday.
IMF expects GDP to grow by 6.3 percent in 2022.
“The strong 2021 performance shows us that we are on the correct path to a resilient recovery. The stage is now set for growth to accelerate in 2022,” the economic managers said.