The Philippine government’s push to increase its infrastructure spending and the recovery of the manufacturing sector, among others, are expected to buoy the domestic economy from the impact of the possible recession in the United States.
According to February 2023 issue of The Market Call, the joint monthly publication of the First Metro Investment Corporation (FIMC) and the University of Asia and the Pacific (UA&P), “most recent economic data suggest that the Philippine economy may weather the global recession relatively unscathed.”
It said while employment may grow slower in the near term, with the December 2022 level up by 4.3 percent from the previous month’s 4.2 percent, “total man-hours (MH) of work slightly increased to 1.98 billion MH from 1.97-B MH in November.”
“This gain offset the 704,000 drop in total employment to 49 million, a close second to the all-time record level of 49.7 million achieved a month ago,” it added.
The report cited the decline in unemployment rate last December to 12.6 percent from the previous month’s 14.4 percent.
The manufacturing sector grew faster last January, with the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) up at 53.5 from 53.1 in the previous month.
The report cited the drop in the level of the government’s total liabilities by the end of 2022 to PHP13.4 trillion, lower by around P2 billion compared to the November 2022 level.
The Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) traced the decline to the appreciation of the peso against the US dollar and the net redemption of domestic government securities.
“While NG (national government) financials for December will come out only by the last week of February, the minor increase in debt-to-GDP (gross domestic product) ratio to 60.9 percent in 2022 from 60.4 percent a year earlier enables us to infer that the total deficit for the year fell below NG (national government) targets. The decline of domestic debt by P219.6 billion in December from the previous month would tend to support this logic,” it added.*PNA