PH exports post 5th straight month of growth in May

MANILA — The Philippines posted its fifth straight month of positive exports revenue growth in May 2017 contrary to the negative exports growth in the same period in 2016.

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported Tuesday that exports in May this year increased by 13.7 percent to USD5.49 billion, a turnaround from last year’s decline of 1.4 percent amounting to USD4.83 billion.

Seven out of 10 major export products of the country registered expansion in May 2017 led by the 294-percent growth in outbound shipment of cathodes and sections of cathodes and of refined copper.

Double-digit growth on revenue were posted in exports of coconut oil with 62 percent growth; other mineral products, at 48 percent; ignition wiring set and other wiring sets used in vehicles, aircrafts and ships, at 24 percent; metal components, at 22 percent; and electronic products, at 18 percent.

Machinery and transport equipment exports grew by 2.61 percent year-on-year in May 2017.

Losers were led by woodcrafts and furniture, with revenue declining by 26 percent, followed by other manufactures at 5.0 percent, while chemicals slightly slipped by 0.01 percent.

Electronic goods remained the country’s top export in May 2017, accounting for half of the revenues.

Electronics exports in May 2017 reached USD2.74 billion from USD2.33 billion in May 2016.

“The growth we are seeing reflects the resurgence of the manufacturing sector, with renewed optimism of greater opportunities and higher business confidence during President Duterte’s administration,” Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez told the Philippine News Agency in a text message.

For the month of May, Japan was the country’s top export destination accounting for 17 percent of the total export revenues for the said month.

Exports to Japan in May 2017 amounted to USD939.63 million.

This is followed by United States of America sharing USD772.5 million in exports revenue, Hong Kong with USD685.86 million, and China with USD600 million.

The top four export markets for the Philippines accounted for more than half of the revenues in May.

Lopez noted that the continued expansion in exports to Hong Kong and China was driven by the “renewed friendship” between the Philippines and China.

Meanwhile, exports from January to May 2017 grew 16.3 percent to USD26.11 billion from USD22.46 billion in the same period last year. Kris Crismundo/