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DTI cuts PH export targets after COVID impact assessment

The Department of Trade and Industry adjusted the Philippine export target to US$105 billion by 2022 from the original target of $130 billion due to the coronavirus impact and weaker global demand
• Exports are expected to decline 13.6% in 2020, but grow by 12.5% in 2021 and 14.8% in 2022

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has cut its export target under the Philippine Export Development Plan (PEDP) 2018-2022 to US$105 billion by 2022 from the original target of $130 billion after considering the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and weaker global demand.

“In this revised set of targets, we will reach $105 billion by 2022, but still growing from $91.7 billion in 2021,” Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said in a statement.

For 2020, DTI estimates that exports will decline 13.6% “given the height of the lockdown and the pandemic,” Lopez added. Export goods are expected to decrease 10.9% to $47.6 billion and services to drop 17.1% to $34 billion.

He noted that the positive growth of 2% in September and 3% in November last year was not enough to offset the decline in the first half of 2020, which was the height of the lockdown.

But export numbers continued to improve month-on-month, reaching positive growth by September and November compared to the same periods last year, Lopez noted.

The DTI chief earlier said the PEDP was undergoing periodic review and the agency had “proposed revisions aligned with the pandemic effects and impact to our economy.”

READ: DTI downgrades 2022 export target to $104B

Lopez said travel goods, garments, and wood-based industries were hit the most by the weak global demand and production decrease due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Exports are expected to rebound to a 12.5% increase in 2021 and 14.8% in 2022.

Goods are seen growing 13.5% in 2021 to $54 billion and 14.8% to $62 billion in 2022.

Services, on the other hand, are projected to rise 11% to $37.6 billion in 2021 and 14.8% to $43.3 billion in 2022.

“We can consider these targets as fighting targets, after intensive consultations with each export sector and stakeholder and global market prospects per sector. This also means that we shall exert all efforts in terms of policies and support programs to assist the export sector and help them achieve these fighting targets,” the trade chief said.

Lopez added they expect the passage of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises bill and other economic reforms, the “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program, and other investment and export promotions including digitalization programs to drive up more investment inflows.

These legislation and programs will also “increase our export capacities, and unleash our potentials in higher-value sectors such as in electronics, automotive, aerospace, information technology and business process management, copper and the creative industries, plus the potential in halal exports,” he said.



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