Factory output declined by a tenth in December from a year ago on lower production of petroleum products, basic metals and furniture, the Philippine Statistics Authority said Wednesday.
Preliminary results of the Monthly Integrated Survey of Selected Industries showed the volume of production index dropped 10.1 percent in December.
“Petroleum products and basic metals, with 47.9 percent decrement, contributed largely to the decrease of VoPI in December 2019. Two other major industries that registered two-digit decrements in VoPI were furniture and fixtures [-30.4 percent] and miscellaneous manufactures [-10.5 percent],” the PSA said.
Both indices remained in the negative territory in the twelve months of 2019, resulting in a full-year decline of 8.6 percent and 7.1 percent, respectively. This reversed the positive growth of manufacturing in 2018.
Meanwhile, the value of production index also showed an annual drop of 9.5 percent in December. Economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said the government should continue supporting initiatives towards digital solutions in the private sector to boost manufacturing growth and bounce back from its decline in 2019.
“We encourage industries to capitalize on innovation to reach their growth potential in this era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. To this end, the government needs to formulate and implement policies and programs to stimulate innovation in the country,” said Pernia.
“The Philippines also needs to improve its reputation concerning intellectual property protection. This will attract foreign companies to locate sensitive technologies and product operations in the country,” he said. Julito G. Rada
Pernia said encouraging ASEAN regional cooperation to embark on potential regional infrastructure projects would allow the Philippines to maximize benefits from trade and deepened regional integration.