Philippines says Feb imports up 0.3 pct, slowest in four months

Thu Apr 24, 2014 9:34pm EDT

Related Topics

* Feb trade deficit at $66 million vs yr-ago deficit of $967
million
    * Feb trade deficit smallest in four months
    * Electronics imports up 2.2 pct yr/yr, slowest in two
months

    MANILA, April 25 (Reuters) - Philippine imports in February
rose by 0.3 percent from a year earlier, the slowest increase
since October, the statistics agency said on Friday.

KEY DATA         Feb   Jan   Dec    Nov    Oct    Sept   Aug    
Imports ($ bln)  4.72  5.95  5.41   5.24   4.82    5.71  5.55   
yr/yr chg (pct)  0.3   26.0  2.1    0.5   -8.6     7.2   7.0    
mth/mth (pct)   -20.7  10.0  3.4    8.5  -15.5     3.0   1.1
    
Electronics
Imports ($ bln)  1.28  1.29  1.26   1.15   1.25    1.76  1.34   
yr/yr chg (pct)  2.2   12.1  -2.5   -8.7   -7.3    29.9  -9.0   
mth/mth (pct)   -0.7    2.6   8.2   -7.6  -29.3    31.6 -17.6
    
KEY POINTS:
  - The country's largest imports are components used by the
semiconductor and electronics industry, the biggest export
sector and a major contributor to the economy. Imports of
electronic parts in February climbed 2.2 percent from a year
earlier, the slowest in two months.
  - The country's trade deficit in February of $66 million
compares with year-ago deficit of $967 million, and is the
smallest deficit since October when it recorded a surplus of
$202 million.
  - The electronics industry group has forecast electronic
exports will grow 5 percent this year.
  - Based on the central bank's latest estimates, Philippine
exports are expected to rise 6 percent this year, and imports to
grow 6 percent.
  - The destruction wrought in the central Philippines in
November by super typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest to ever
hit land, could spur more imports of construction materials for
rebuilding of communities, officials have said.
  - Total imports in 2013 were down 0.7 percent to $61.7 billion
from a year ago. The country had a trade deficit of $695 million
in December, widening the total trade gap in 2013 to $7.73
billion.
  - Officials have set an economic growth target of 6.5-7.5
percent this year, after growth of 7.2 percent in 2013.

 (Reporting by Erik dela Cruz; Editing by Miral Fahmy)
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