Government Vows To Sustain Growth

MANILA, Philippines - Finance Secretary Cesar V. Purisima assured yesterday that the Aquino administration will continue to work hard to ensure the country would sustain the high level of growth in the first semester of the year.

Purisima said that the government will continue to invest in the necessary infrastructure to boost investments, especially in agriculture, tourism, and business process outsourcing (BPO).

"We will continue to align policies and rationalize processes to reduce the cost of doing business. We will continue to provide support to further the diversification of our exports," Purisima said in a statement.

"With the government's focus on the fundamentals, and the private sector's optimism, we are confident that we will be able to continue expanding the economy," he added.

The finance chief explained that the January to June economic growth came despite the deceleration of global growth, and with the backdrop of increasing uncertainty in the US and in the Eurozone.

"Our second quarter growth was at a respectable 5.9 percent, beating market expectations and placing us at the upper end of our full year forecast. This brings our first semester growth to 6.1 percent, well beyond the 4.7 percent average GDP growth of the country in the last decade," Purisima said.

By type of expenditure, household and government consumption continued to expand by 5.7 percent and 5.9 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, public construction pushed growth in total construction to 9.2 percent. Exports of goods grew by 7.9 percent, while exports of services grew by 9.9 percent, driving total exports to grow by 8.3 percent.

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