MANILA, June 25 (Reuters) - Philippine imports climbed on an
annual basis for the first time in four months in April, with
the value of purchases also at a four-month high, the statistics
office said on Tuesday.
KEY DATA Apr Mar Feb Jan Dec Nov Oct
Imports ($ bln) 5.14 4.92 4.71 4.73 5.30 5.14 5.24
yr/yr chg (pct) 7.4 -8.4 -5.8 -7.9 14.4 2.3 4.3
NOTE: Some previous numbers have been revised
- The country's largest imports are inputs used by the
semiconductor and electronics industry, also the biggest export
sector and a major contributor to the economy. Imports of
electronic parts in April fell 19.0 percent from a year earlier,
worse than a 0.6 percent drop in March.
- In 2012, imports rose 1.9 percent, well below the central
bank's growth forecast of 7 percent. Exports rose 7.6 percent
versus the central bank's forecast for an 8 percent rise.
- Exports, which account for about two-fifths of the
country's GDP, contracted sharply in April, dragged down by weak
demand from major trading partners the United States and China,
but economists still expect brisk economic growth in the second
quarter helped by strong domestic consumption.
- The electronics industry group has said it was keeping its
5 to 6 percent growth forecast for the country's main
electronics shipments, despite a 6.2 percent contraction in the
first quarter, given expectations of a pick-up in global demand
for smartphones and tablets.
- The Southeast Asian nation is targeting GDP growth of 6 to
7 percent this year, after an upwardly revised 6.8 percent
expansion in 2012.
- The Philippine central bank kept its benchmark interest
rate steady this month, as expected, and left the rate on its
special deposit account unchanged to allow previous policy
changes time to work their way through the economy.
(Reporting by Enrico dela Cruz; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
Keywords: PHILIPPINES ECONOMY/IMPORTS
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