ADB maintains PH GDP forecast at 6.5%




The Manila Times

Business Times

THE Asian Development Bank (ADB) said on Wednesday it is maintaining its 6.5-percent growth outlook for the Philippine economy this year, fueled by the country’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. The Asian Development Outlook 2022 Update added that the growth projection for 2023 is kept at 6.3 percent as monetary policy tightening and accelerating inflation will affect domestic demand. For this year, the ADB noted the bouncing back of travel, recreation, dining and household consumption in the first half of 2022 as mobility restrictions further eased. It added that most sectors, such as services, have contributed to employment recovery. “The normalization of socioeconomic activity will usher the Philippine economy to a steady, pre-pandemic pace of expansion,” Kelly Bird, ADB Philippines country director, said in a statement. “The recovery in tourism and private investments, coupled with sustained public spending on large infrastructure projects and remittances from overseas Filipinos, will bolster the country’s economic recovery this year,” Bird added. ADB also noted growth across developing Asia lower at 4.3 percent compared to earlier forecasts — 4.6 percent in July and 5.2 percent in April. While some economists expect the gross domestic product (GDP) growth for the Philippines to slow down to the 5.9-percent to 6.6-percent range, the government expects the country’s GDP to grow between 6.5 percent and 7.5 percent this year. The ADB also noted a sharper slowdown in major advanced economies, heightened geopolitical tensions and possible sustained elevated global commodity prices due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine making the actual growth of the Philippine economy lower than its forecast. The regional development bank also mentioned that inflation is expected to quicken faster to an average of 5.3 percent in 2022, higher than its July forecast of 4.9 percent. This is way above the government target of 2 to 4 percent. The ADB cited global energy shocks and natural disasters for the upward revision.