ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Philippine exports continue fast pace
The National Statistics Office (NSO) said merchandise imports that month grew by 24.6 percent to $4.574 billion from last year's $3.670 billion. A year ago, imports contracted by 25 percent.
In May, Philippine purchases from abroad expanded by 31.4 percent.
The September purchases led the nine-month imports to grow 26 percent to $39.938 billion from last year's $31.692 billion.
With exports growing 46.4 percent in September, the country posted a trade surplus of $751 million compared with last year's deficit of $32 million.
The September trade position led the nine-month trade deficit to ease from $.4.044 billion last year to $1.629 billion this year.
September purchases of electronic products, which accounted for 35.7 percent of total imports, went up by 23.8 percent to $1.632 billion over last year's $1.318 billion.
On a monthly basis, electronics imports however fell by 0.8 percent from $1.645 billion in August.
Imports of mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials in September rose 6.9 percent to $734.66 million from last year's $687.50 million.
Transport equipment imports recorded a 33.2-percent increase at $294.66 million from last year's $217.51 million.
Purchases of industrial machinery and equipment amounted to $209.90 million, an increase of 65 percent from last year's $127.22 million.
Imports of metalliferous ores and metal scrap rose 393.3 percent to $32.31 million, while organic and inorganic chemicals purchases from abroad reached $110.78 million.
Japan was the Philippines' biggest source of imports at $556.09 million from $533.60 million in September last year.
The U.S. was the second biggest source at $491.52 million, up by 30.3 percent from last year's $377.28 million.
Also on Friday, the NSO said Philippine factory output slowed in September as manufacturers' average capacity utilization slightly dropped.
Data from NSO showed that factory output rose 15.9 percent, slower than the revised 25.6 percent growth in August.
The agency attributed the double-digit growth to the increased production in miscellaneous manufactures, electrical machinery, transport equipment, beverages, publishing and printing, non-metallic mineral products, machinery except electrical, rubber and plastic products, basic metals and textiles.
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