Philippine Exports continue surge in February

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Philippine exports continue surge in February

Philippine exports rose for the fourth consecutive month in February, posting double-digit growth from a year earlier following a surge in electronic product sales, the government reported on Tuesday.

Export earnings grew by 42.3 percent to $3.567 billion in February from a year earlier, bringing the two-month level to $7.146 billion or 42.4 percent growth. Merchandise exports declined by 0.4 percent from the January level, the National Statistics Office said.

University of Asia and the Pacific economist Victor A. Abola said the country could sustain the export growth in the coming months, noting that it is coming from a low base.

“Exports are recovering significantly, but not yet to their peak in 2007,” he said in an interview.

Top 5 Philippine exports (February 2010 vs 2009) Source: National Statistics Office
Accounting for 58.1 percent of total export revenues in February, electronic products were the country’s top export, growing by more than half to $2.072 billion.

Semiconductors, which made up 42.3 percent of the total, increased by 59.6 percent to $1.508 billion. Month on month, electronic products went up by 1.9 percent.

Meanwhile, apparel and clothing accessories, which had a 3.6-percent share in total exports in February, emerged as the second top gainer with revenues worth $126.58 million. But on a yearly basis, this commodity group slid by 13.3 percent.

Wiring sets, which has a 2.6-percent share, more than tripled to $91.85 million from a year earlier.

Ranked fourth and contributing 2.2 percent to total export receipts were woodcrafts and furniture, with revenues reaching $79.43 million. The amount was 3.3 lower than the year-ago level, the NSO said.

Metal components, which made up 1.7 percent of total exports, ranked fifth, with value at $60.72 million or more than double the level in February last year.

Rounding up the list of the top 10 exports in February were coconut oil (up by 96 percent to $54.61 million); products made from imported materials on consignment basis (up by 2 percent to $46.06 million; cathodes (down by a quarter to $40.85 million); fresh bananas (up by almost a fifth to $30.18 million); and petroleum products (more than sixfold increase to $27.53 million).

Japan emerged as the country’s top export destination, followed by the US, Singapore, China, Germany, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, South Korea, Thailand and Taiwan.

Export receipts from the top 10 markets reached $3.029 billion in February or 84.9 percent of the total.