Philippines Trade Deficit Largest in the Record


Philippines reported a trade deficit of USD1,937 million in October of 2015, as compared to a USD441.11 million gap a year earlier and below market consensus. It is the largest deficit in the record, as exports plunged while imports rose more than expected.

In October, exports declined by 10.8 percent year-on-year to USD4.59 billion, following an upwardly revised 15.5 percent fall in the preceding month. Outbond shipments fell the most for articles of apparel and clothing accessories (-53.6 percent) and other mineral products (-50.2 percent). Sales also decreased for: chemicals (-40.3 percent); metal components (-35.9 percent); coconut oil (-31.2 percent), other manufactures (-30.0 percent) and machinery and transport equipment (-18.0 percent). In contrast, exports rose for woodcrafts and furniture (+43.2 percent) and ignition wiring set and other wiring sets used in vehicles, aircrafts and ships (+5.1 percent). Sales of electronic products, the country's top export revenues, also increased by 7.3 percent.
 
Sales to all of the country's main trading partners declined. Those to the US, representing a 14.7 percent of total exports, dropped  by 13.1 percent to USD675.35 million, followed by China (-31.6 percent to USD426.88 million, 9.3 percent share), the ASEAN countries (-5.0 percent to USD738.11 million with exports to Singapore falling by 8.9 percent to USD338.49 million), the EU countries (-1.3 percent to USD596.58 million, 13.0 percent share) and Hong Kong (-4.3 percent to USD, 10.8 percent share). Exports to Japan, the country's top destination of exports, fell by 7.7 percent to USD1.04 billion.
 
Imports rose 16.8 percent to USD6.53 billion, the fifth straight month of increase. Purchases increased the most for electronic products (+70.7 percent) and industrial machinery and equipment (+52.5 percent). Import also went up for telecommunication equipment and electrical machinery (+36.3 percent), iron and steel (+32.0 percent), cereals and cereal preparations (+11.5 percent) and transport equipment (+9.1 percent). In contrast, inbound shipments declined for: mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (-38.5 percent), plastics in primary and non-primary forms (-24.5 percent), other food and live animals (-17.8 percent) and miscellaneous manufactured articles (-7.6 percent).
 
Purchases from China, the biggest source of imports for Philippines, increased by 22.9 percent year-on-year to USD1.12 billion. Imports from the US, the second largest source of purchases, rose by 50.6 percent to USD701.06 million, followed by Japan (+55.3 percent to USD729.99 million), the ASEAN countries (+9.2 percent to USD1.66 billion), and South Korea (+53.6 percent to USD564.11 million) and Thailand (+34.4 percent to USD506.41 million). In contrast, imports from the EU countries declined by 13.1 percent to USD524.34 million.
 
In September 2015, the country registered a downwardly revised USD1,316 million trade deficit.
 
From January to October 2015, the Southeast Asian nation recorded a USD7.66 billion trade gap, widening from a USD2.27 billion in the same period of last year.
 
 

Philippines Trade Deficit Largest in the Record


PSA l Rida Husna | rida@tradingeconomics.com
12/29/2015 5:34:56 AM