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18 December 2009
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Philippines confident meeting growth target in 2009 and 2010

The Philippine government remains confident of meeting economic targets this year and in 2010 on the back of robust dollar remittances from Filipino workers abroad and increased spending during the election period, reported online news website GMA.News.TV.

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) told a briefing on Thursday the 0.8 percent to 1.8 percent economic growth assumption of the interagency Development Budget Coordination Committee is attainable. For the January to September period, economic output growth stood at 0.7 percent. For next year, the DBCC expects the economy to grow by 2.6-3.6 percent.

"As of the last DBCC meeting, we are keeping the growth range. We're being conservative. [For the fourth quarter], given developments, we could reach or breach 0.9 percent," said Dennis Arroyo, NEDA director for national planning and policy.

"This year is a crisis year, so it’s good to be conservative, he added."

Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Augusto Santos said the government would continue with its stimulus package through a P230-billion deficit spending next year.

"Deficit spending is an indication that we're not exiting yet [from the economic crisis]. We will continue the stimulus but in a lesser scale," he said.

Meanwhile, 2010 election spending is also expected to boost the economy. NEDA earlier said campaign spending could 0.34 percentage points to growth.

Export earnings are also expected to go up next year, as the global semiconductor industry grows by 12.4 percent.

"The Philippines is determined to ride the wave of recovery. We will undertake measures to improve competitiveness and others. We will also focus on governance reform measures to address corruption," Santos said.


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