Philippines Trade Gap Narrows in July


The Philippine's trade deficit narrowed to USD 3.39 billion in July of 2019 from USD 4.02 billion in the same month a year earlier, as exports rose while imports fell.

Year-on-year, exports rose by 3.5 percent to USD 6.17 billion, after an upwardly revised 3.3 percent gain in the previous month. It was the fourth straight month of increase in exports, and the fastest growth in nine months, as sales advanced for gold (81.8%), bananas (34.6%), machinery and transport (23.9%), electronic equipment and parts (18.9%); ignition wiring set and other wiring sets used in vehicles, aircraft and ships (17.6%); other mineral products (7.9%), other manufacture goods (5.7%).  Also, sales of electronic products, the country's the country's top exports, rose by 2.9 percent. In contrast, sales fell for metal components (-11.8%); chemicals (-2.5%).

 Among the Philippines' major trading partners sales advanced to the US (8.9%), China (8.5%), South Korea (49.8%), Japan (8.3%), Netherlands (25.3%), and the EU countries (6.6%). Conversely, exports contracted to, Singapore (-7.3%), Taiwan (-9.3%), Hong Kong (-2.1%), Germany (-3.7%), Thailand (-4.9%), and the ASEAN countries (-9.2%). Considering January to June, exports edged down 0.1 percent from the same period of 2018.

Imports dropped by 4.2 percent to USD 9.57 billion in July 2019, following a 10.4 percent fall in the prior month. This was the fourth consecutive month of yearly decline in inbound shipments, of which iron & steel (-35.8%); mineral fuels, lubricants (-14.5%); transport equipment (-12.0%); telecommunication equipment and electrical machinery (-2.4%); industrial machinery and equipment (-1.5%). By contrast, inbound shipment rose for: miscellaneous manufactured articles (18.9%); other food and live animals (12.3%), cereals & cereal preparations (6.0%); electronic products (1.2%), and plastics in primary and non-primary form (0.5%).  

Purchases declined from Japan (-2.7%), South Korea (-16.3%), the US (-5.9%), Thailand (-18.6%), Indonesia (-9.3%), Taiwan (-11.4%), and the EU (-6.3%). Purchases from China, the Philippines's largest supplier of imports, jumped 14.8 percent. Also, arrivals increased from Singapore (32.2%), Hong Kong (23.5%), Malaysia (13.7%), and the ASEAN countries (3.0%). Regarding January to July 2019, imports fell by 1.5 percent from the same period the prior year.

Considering the first seven months of the year, exports edged up 0.1 percent from a year earlier while imports declined 1.5 percent, recording a USD 22.29 billion trade gap.

Philippines Trade Gap Narrows in July


National Statistics Office of Philippines l Luisa Carvalho | luisa.carvalho@tradingeconomics.com
9/10/2019 9:49:51 AM