The Philippines’ manufacturing output posted double-digit growth in both December last year and full-year 2016 due to an increase in the production of petroleum products, food manufactures, and transport equipment, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).
Based on the Philippine Statistics Authority’s Monthly Integrated Survey of Selected Industries (MISSI) for December 2016, the Volume of Production Index (VoPI) for manufacturing increased to 23% from 5% in the same period in 2015.
Likewise, the Value of Production Index for manufacturing grew 19.4% in December 2016, reversing the 2.7% decline recorded in December 2015.
As a result, full-year VoPI for manufacturing grew 14.4% in 2016, a big leap from the 2.5% growth recorded in 2015.
“The manufacturing sector is performing very well. Increases in the purchases of capital and durable goods contributed to the increase and further indicate that there is business and consumer confidence in the domestic economy,” Socioeconomic Planning secretary Ernesto M. Pernia said in a statement.
Transport equipment recorded growth in production volume and value of 34.3% and 35.6%, respectively, in December 2016.
Meanwhile, construction-related manufactures sustained the upward trend, primarily on increased demand for both residential (19.2%) and non-residential buildings (27.3%) during the third quarter of 2016.
For December 2016, food manufacturing grew 35.1%, the highest production volume growth recorded since 2013. The value of production of the food subsector also increased 37.7%, driven mainly by domestic demand during the holiday season and higher production value for vegetable oil and animal fats.
Moreover, for intermediate goods, the petroleum subsector has sustained its growth, posting a production volume growth of 63.2% for December 2016. This is a complete reversal from the 34.2% decline in 2015.
Notwithstanding the impressive performance of the manufacturing sector, Pernia believes much can still be done to realize its potential to provide quality and stable jobs. The proposed Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022 enumerates strategies to boost the manufacturing sector.
“We must further encourage the expansion of the capacity of existing firms, entry of new ones and facilitate linkages across firms and sectors. The use of science, technology and innovation must also be promoted. We must also enhance the competencies of our labor force to produce high-quality and competitive products,” he said.
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