PH remains one of fastest growing economies in Asia, says Salceda
MANILA, Philippines — Despite the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth falling to an eight-year low in 2019, Albay Rep. Joey Salceda on Thursday said the Philippines remains to be one of the fastest growing economies in Asia.
Salceda made the remark after the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported that the GDP grew 6.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019.
This means that the country’s economy grew 5.9 percent in 2019, which is the slowest pace in eight years and below the government’s target of 6 to 6.5 percent.
“At 6.4 percent GDP growth rate for the fourth quarter of 2019, the Philippines remains one of the fastest growing economies in Asia,” Salceda, who chairs the House committee on ways and means, said.
“Among countries of comparative size in the world, we are also among the fastest. More so, the upward quarterly trend proves economy has traction and exhibit robust signals of acceleration ahead,” he added.
The lawmaker also expressed confidence that the country would be able to achieve a 7-percent GDP growth in any of the quarters next year especially after the early approval of the 2020 budget.
“Clearly, the Philippine economy started picking up after the budget got approved. For a developing country like ours, the prompt delivery of public investments is among the most important factors of economic growth,” Salceda said, adding that the country is also “poised for even stronger growth in 2020.”
“With the passage of the sin tax law, and the tax administration reforms my committee is undertaking, we hope to see tax to GDP ratio increase,” the lawmaker further noted.
Salceda also has a message to investors for 2020: “Bet on the Philippines this year. It may be among the best calls you make.”
Data from the PSA showed that the country’s GDP growth in 2019 is the lowest annual rate since 2011 when GDP growth was reported at 3.7 percent.