October 10, 2018 / 1:18 AM / 10 days ago

Philippines' trade deficit stays above $3 bln, imports up 11 pct

MANILA, Oct 10 (Reuters) - The Philippines’ trade deficit stayed well above $3 billion for the fifth month in a row in August as import growth outpaced exports, government data showed on Wednesday.

Exports grew 3.1 percent from a year ago and imports rose 11 percent, the Philippine Statistics Authority said. The trade deficit reached $3.513 billion in August, compared with $3.546 billion in July. In August 2017, the trade gap was $2.737 billion.

The Southeast Asian country has been posting large trade gaps since last year, widening its current account deficit and adding pressure on the peso, which has been languishing near 13-year lows against the U.S. dollar. (Reporting by Manolo Serapio Jr. and Neil Jerome Morales; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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