PH fastest growing Asean-5 economy in H1
As the fastest-growing economy in Asean-5 in the first half of 2022, the country’s chief economist expects the Philippines to sustain robust expansion for the rest of this year and throughout the Marcos administration.
“The Philippines is today the best-performing economy among major Asean members. In 2021 and the first half of 2022, our economy grew the fastest, indicating that the recovery of our high-growth trajectory in the past decade has been quite robust,” Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said in a speech at the 43rd National Conference of Employers on Wednesday.
Data presented by Balisacan, who heads the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda), showed that despite slower second quarter economic growth of 7.4 percent due to high consumer prices, first half gross domestic product (GDP) growth averaged 7.8 percent, outpacing the 6.9-percent expansion in Malaysia, 6.4 percent in Vietnam, 5.2 percent in Indonesia and 2.4 percent in Thailand.
Last year, the Philippines’ GDP growth of 5.7 percent also surpassed Indonesia’s 3.7 percent, Malaysia’s 3.1 percent, Vietnam’s 2.6 percent and Thailand’s 1.6 percent.
However, the Philippines suffered from its worst post-war recession in 2020 when GDP slid by 9.5 percent at the height of the most stringent COVID-19 lockdowns. Two years ago at the onset of the pandemic, Vietnam’s GDP grew by 2.9 percent, while the economies of Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia also contracted, although at a slower pace than the Philippine economy.
Balisacan noted that the first half average GDP growth was above the downscaled 6.5- to 7.5-percent target for this year. President Marcos’ economic team and private sector economists, however, had projected a slower second half expansion due to base effects plus the impact of lingering elevated inflation.