April trade deficit expands to highest in five months

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  • The Philippines’ trade deficit in April expanded to its highest in five months as imports and exports posted double-digit increases, according to preliminary data from the Philippine Statistics Authority
  • The country’s total external trade grew 17.2% to $17.19 billion in April from $14.66 billion for the same period last year
  • Imports rose 12.6% to $10.98 billion while exports surged 26.4% to $6.22 billion year-on-year
  • China remained the country’s top import supplier while Hong Kong was the top export destination

The country’s trade deficit in April expanded to its highest in five months as imports and exports posted double-digit increases, according to preliminary data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The latest balance of trade amounted to -$4.76 billion from March’s $3.44-billion shortfall although lower by 1.5% from the $4.83 deficit in April last year.

The total external trade grew 17.2% to $17.19 billion in April from $14.66 billion year-on-year.

Of the total, 63.8% were imported goods and the rest exported goods.

Imports rose 12.6% to $10.98 billion in April 2024 from $9.75 billion posted year-on-year.

From January to April this year, imports reached $40.46 billion, 2.2% lower than from $41.36 billion in the same period last year.

Exports surged 26.4% in April 2024 to $6.22 billion from $4.92 billion in April 2023.

From January to April this year, exports grew 9.6% to $24.19 billion from $22.07 billion in January to April 2023.

Electronic products continued to be the country’s imported and export commodity group.

Imports of electronic products accounted for $2.32 billion or 21.1% share of the total import bill. In terms of exports, electronic products shared $3.57 billion or 57.4% of the total.

By major type of goods, imports of raw materials and intermediate goods continued to account for the largest share of the country’s total imports in April 2024 amounting to $4.09 billion (37.2%).

Manufactured goods, meanwhile, contributed the largest to the country’s total exports in April 2024 amounting to $4.99 billion or a share of 80.2%.

China remained the country’s top supplier of imported goods with $3.15 billion or 28.7% of the country’s total imports in April 2024.

It was followed by Indonesia, $959.21 million; Japan, $909.54 million; South Korea, $743.11 million; and the US, $726.20 million.

Exports to Hong Kong, meanwhile, comprised the highest export value amounting to $1.03 billion or a share of 16.5% to the country’s total exports in April 2024. It was followed by the US, $948.43 million; Japan, $823.27 million; China, $702.02 million; and South Korea, $314.59 million.

READ: PH external trade drops for 4th straight month; imports, exports continue slide