Exports grow for 8th straight month in January
MANILA, Philippines – The country's exports rose for the 8th consecutive month in January, thanks to sustained demand for electronic products, although growth was slower than the previous months.
Data from the Philippine Statistics Authority showed the Philippines' export earnings totaled $4.381 billion in January. This was 9.3% higher than the $4.010 billion recorded in January 2013, but lower than December's $4.599 billion receipts.
January's growth was also slower than the growths seen in December (15.8%), November (18.9%) and October (14%).
Shipments of electronics, which accounted for more than 40% of total export earnings, jumped 22.1% to $1.79 billion. In December, electronics exports rose 26.2%.
In a statement, the National Economic and Development Authority said exports consistently posted growth over the last 8 months due to the recovery of the manufacturing sector.
"The upward trajectory of Philippine exports as a result of the buoyant export performance of manufactured products clearly proves the significance of the manufacturing sector as one of our growth drivers," NEDA director general Arsenio Balisacan said.
Export earnings from manufactured goods posted a year-on-year increase of 15.3% to $3.79 billion as shipments of electronics, machinery and transport equipment, electronic equipment and parts, garments, and miscellaneous manufactures registered significant gains.
Balisacan said that robust exports of manufactures also offset the decrease in export earnings from other major commodity groups such as total agro-based products, mineral products, petroleum, and forest products.
"Despite the setbacks in some commodity groups and other sectors, the Philippines’ merchandise export growth in January 2014 is one of the fastest among selected trade-oriented economies in the East and Southeast Asian region, trailing behind PR China," the NEDA chief said.
Japan was still the top destination of Philippine exports in January, accounting for 26.3% or $1.15 billion of the country’s total overseas merchandise sales.
Other top markets were US (13.8%), PR China (9.9%), Singapore (8.8%), and Hong Kong (7.5%). – Rappler.com