ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Ratings firm says growth to taper
S&P said Vietnam and Malaysia are leading the ASEAN-5 pack in terms of growth, while the other three-Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines-are also on track for recovery, to different degrees, however.
"In 2010, we expect average first-half growth for the ASEAN-5 to reach 7.9 percent, before dropping back to about 4.8 percent for the second half," Joshi said.
In the Philippines, first-half election spending drove private consumption and government consumption, he said.
Indeed, the Aquino administration has complained of not having enough money left when it took over the government in the middle of the year following its predecessor's frontloading activity.
Remittances have not let up, with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) expecting money sent home by overseas Filipino workers to grow by 8 percent this year. The central bank has kept its policy rates at record lows since August 2009.
In the Philippines, exports have been growing by double-digits, led by the recovery of the electronics sector.
Alongside the growth in the first half of the year, S&P said inflation in most of the Asean-5 had been edging up.
Last month, Philippine inflation inched up to 4 percent from July's 3.9 percent.
The BSP however expects inflation this year to fall well within its target of 3.5 percent to 5.5 percent.
For 2011, the full-year average is expected to be closer to the lower end of the target of 3 percent than to upper-end of 5 percent.
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