MANILA – Malacañang on Thursday welcomed the better than expected growth of the Philippine economy during the third quarter, saying it can be attributed in part to the stability the country currently enjoys under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.
The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported Thursday that the Philippine economy grew by 6.9 percent in the third quarter of the year, higher than a market consensus of 6.6 percent.
The country’s third quarter growth is faster than the 6.7 percent growth in the second quarter of the year, and the fastest in the last four quarters.
According to the PSA, industry recorded the fastest growth at 7.5 percent while services expanded by 7.1 percent and agriculture grew by 2.5 percent.
The government expects the economy to grow by 6.5 to 7.5 percent in 2017.
“That’s good news. In fact, it was (Finance) Secretary (Carlos) Dominguez who informed me, they even adjusted the growth rate by 0.2 percent, which is very good news,” said Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque during a Palace briefing.
President Duterte’s economic team has attributed the economic growth to the sound fiscal policies put in place by the administration.
But for Roque, the growing economy is in part due to the stability being enjoyed by the country since Duterte assumed office.
“I think it is the type of stability that the country is now enjoying,” he said.
“It is stability that brings about predictability, which brings out business investor’s confidence. And that can be attributed to President Duterte’s administration,” Roque said.
Under the Duterte administration, the government has waged a war against illegal drugs, corruption and criminality.
President Duterte also continues to pursue peace talks with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the New People’s Army (NPA) among others.
His government had just successfully concluded the war in Marawi City, showing the world its resolve to counter the threat of violent extremist terrorism.
In the meantime, the ambitious Build, Build, Build program of the Duterte administration is expected to spend PHP8.4 trillion on infrastructure until 2022, which economic managers said would further boost GDP growth.