Philippines Trade Balance Swings to Deficit in May

Philippines reported a trade deficit of USD2.02 billion in May of 2016, compared to a 0.065 billion surplus a year earlier, as exports fell while imports jumped.
PSA l Rida Husna | 7/26/2016 3:21:47 AM
Year-on-year, sales declined by 3.8 percent to USD4.71 billion, following a 4.1 percent fall in April. It was the 14th straight month of decline, driven by other mineral products (-43.8 percent), articles of apparel and clothing accessories (-41.7 percent), chemicals (-37.2 percent) and metal components (-14.0 percent). Exports of electronic products, the country's top export revenues, also decreased by 4.0 percent. In contrast, outbound shipments rose for: miscellaneous manufactured articles (+188.6 percent), woodcrafts and furniture (+49.7 percent), machinery and transport equipment (+29.3 percent); ignition wiring set and other wiring Sets used in vehicles, aircrafts and ships (+6.8 percent) and other manufactures (+1.5 percent).

Sales fell to the US (-3.7 percent to USD703.54 million), China (-13.7 percent to USD499.15 million), Singapore (-15.7 percent to USD275.85 million), Hong Kong (-2.5 percent to USD513.67 million), the ASEAN countries (-10.2 percent to USD659.71 million) and the EU countries (-5.0 percent to USD584.67 million). In contrast, shipments rose to Japan (+1.5 percent to USD1.04 billion).

Imports increased by 39.3 percent to USD6.74 billion, following a 29.2 percent growth in the preceding month. Philippine Statistics Authority said it was the biggest annual gain for any month since 1994. Purchases were higher for most categories: transport equipment (+108.6 percent), power generating and specialised machinery (+96.7 percent), industrial machinery and equipment (+79.5 percent), plastics in primary and non-primary forms (+79.3 percent), telecommunication equipment and electrical machinery (+77.7 percent), miscellaneous manufactured articles (+45.0 percent), electronic products (+44.5 percent), other food and live animals (+33.7 percent) and iron and steel (+28.3 percent). In contrast, inbound shipments fell 24.9 percent for mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials.

Purchases from China, the biggest source of purchases for Philippines, rose  65.7 percent year-on-year to USD1.37 billion. Those from Japan also increased by 122.7 percent to USD709.57 million, followed by the US (+7.8 percent to USD573.10 million), Thailand (+86.6 percent to USD544.54 million), South Korea (+34.4 percent to USD448.84 million), the ASEAN countries (+59.9 percent to USD1.84 billion)and the EU countries (+7.8 percent to USD444.36 million). 

In April 2016, trade deficit was upwardly revised to USD2.31 billion.

From January to May 2016, the country posted a USD9.8 billion trade deficit, widening from a USD3.34 billion gap reported in the same period a year earlier.

Philippines Trade Balance Swings to Deficit in May