Philippines Trade Surplus Narrows in May


Philippines reported a trade surplus of USD 508.86 million in May of 2015, down from a USD 862.71 million surplus a year earlier as exports fell more than imports.

In May, exports declined by 17.4 percent year-on-year to USD 4.90 billion. Sales of other mineral products fell the most by 66.5 percent, followed by machinery and transport equipmen (-34.3 percent); woodcrafts and furniture (-33.8 percent); other manufactures (-24.9 percent); articles of apparel and clothing accessories (-7.4 percent) and ignition wiring set and other wiring sets used in vehicles, aircrafts and ships (-4.0 percent). Outbond shipments of electronic products, the country's top export earners in May 2015, also declined by 7.5 percent. Among the major groups of electronic products, components/devices (semiconductors) fell by 6.9 percent from a year earlier. In contrast, exports increased for: electronic equipment and parts (+185.5 percent), metal components (+13.3 percent) and chemicals (+6.2 percent). 

Outbond shipments to the country’s main trading partners mostly declined. Those to the US, representing a 14.2 percent of total exports, dropped by 4.7 percent to USD696.00 million, followed by China (-62.1 percent to USD529.15 million, 10.8 percent share), Singapore (-15.5 percent to USD300.92 million, 6.1 percent share), the ASEAN countries (-21.3 percent to USD718.01 million, 14.7 percent share) and the EU countries (-4.2 percent to USD575.99 million). In contrast, sales to Japan, the country's top destination of exports, rose 7.6 percent to USD1.20 billion. Exports also increased to Hong Kong (+24.6 percent to USD527.37 million, 10.8 percent share).

Imports fell by 13.4 percent to USD 4.39 billion, the largest drop since October 2009. Purchases declined the most for: transport equipment (-32.0 percent), followed by mineral fuels, lubricants and related material (-24.8 percent), iron and steel (-19.1 percent); plastics in primary and non-primary forms (-19.0 percent), miscellaneous manufactured articles (-12.8 percent); electronic products (-12.2 percent); other food and live animals (-3.2 percent) and telecommunication equipment and electrical machinery (-2.2 percent). In contrast, inbound shipments increased for: power generating and specialized machinery (+52.7 percent) and industrial machinery and equipment (+20.0 percent).

Purchases from China, the biggest source of imports, declined by 1.0 percent to USD 719.92 million. Imports from the country's other trading partners also fell: the US (-21.8 percent to USD 426.01 million, 9.7 percent share), Japan (-12.1 percent to  USD367.71 million), South Korea (-7.4 percent to USD307.27 million), Singapore (-10.4 percent to USD303.78 million), the ASEAN countries (-23.0 percent to USD1.04 billion) and the EU countries (-19.9 percent to USD430.03 million).

In April 2015, the country registered a revised USD 337 million trade deficit.

Philippines Trade Surplus Narrows in May


National Statistics Office l Rida Husna l rida@tradingeconomics.com
7/24/2015 3:51:12 AM