National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Director-General Arsenio M. Balisacan expects the main growth drivers of the Philippine economy this fourth quarter to be the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry and the manufacturing sector. Both sectors are projected to help produce higher fourth quarter growth to offset a lackluster third quarter.
Many businesses are also hopeful about the economy, and 2014 exports have been stellar especially for higher value products. Balisacan expects the gross domestic product (GDP) for Q4 to improve on Q3's paltry 5.3 percent growth.
He added that typhoon Ruby's impact on the economy of about 0.02 to 0.03 percent of the GDP was "very negligible," and the agriculture sector's share of the GDP was only around 11 percent. Balisacan mentioned strong macroeconomic fundamentals and optimistic Q4 outlook by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas as some "bright prospects" to look forward to before 2014 ends.
Earlier, Balisacan said the government hopes to reach at least 6 to 7 percent GDP growth in 2014. To hit the 6 percent full year growth target, the economy must grow at least 6.6 percent from October to December. Meanwhile, a higher 8.6 percent Q4 growth is required to reach the lower end of the 6.5 to 7.5 percent official GDP goal of the government.