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Philippine domestic trade declined by double digits in both volume and value in the first quarter of 2020, data from the Philippine Statistics Authority showed.

The volume of domestic trade in the first quarter of the year dropped 33.9% to 4.38 million tons from 6.62 million tons in the same quarter of 2019.

Food and live animals topped in terms of quantity with 1.60 million tons or 36.6% of the total. It was followed by commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere in the Philippine Standard Commodity Classification and manufactured goods with 0.69 million tons (15.7%) and 0.61 million tons (14.1%), respectively.

By region, MIMAROPA (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, Palawan) registered the highest quantity of traded commodities at 0.90 million tons or 20.6% share to total in the first quarter of 2020. Bicol Region ranked second with 0.64 million tons (14.6%) and Central Visayas placed third with 0.57 million tons (12.9%).

In terms of value, domestic trade totaled P125.31 billion, a contraction of 42.7% from the P218.53 billion value recorded in the same period in 2019.

Machinery and transport equipment still led in terms of value with P44.94 billion or 35.9% share to total. It was followed by food and live animals and manufactured goods with P29.62 billion (23.6%) and P14.32 billion (11.4%), respectively.

Western Visayas ranked first with P27.92 billion or 22.3% share, followed by Eastern Visayas with P24.42 billion (19.5%) and Central Visayas with P16.48 billion (13.2%).

Northern Mindanao, meanwhile, posted the highest inflow value of all the regions with P36.38 billion.  It was followed by Central Visayas and Western Visayas with P23.43 billion (18.7%) and P18.65 billion (14.9%), respectively.

CARAGA, on the other hand, had the lowest inflow value of P0.41 billion.

The top three regions with favorable trade balances in the first quarter of 2020 were Eastern Visayas with P11.70 billion; Western Visayas, P9.27 billion; and Bicol Region, P7.17 billion. Trade balance is the difference between the inflow value and outflow value, that is, outflow minus inflow.

Northern Mindanao, on the other hand, had the highest unfavorable trade balance value at P24.84 billion.

Almost all or 99.9% of the commodities remain traded through water (coastwise) while the remaining were through air.

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