The impressive performance of the Philippine economy in the first quarter highlighted not only our resilience, but our capacity to reach faster towards inclusive growth that shall produce jobs and eradicate poverty in the long run. The 6.4% growth from January to March reverberates across the ASEAN region – beating the preliminary regional average growth of 3.7% – at this time of global economic uncertainty due to fiscal problems in the developed world that threaten emerging nations, including the Philippines.
It must be pointed out that even with the 24% increase in government final consumption expenditure and 62.2% growth in public construction, our fiscal position remains strong and well below deficit targets.
This expectation-defying result strengthens our resolve to sustain this growth pace toward achieving a sustainable and inclusive economic expansion. While we recognize the risks that exogenous factors pose, we also see the opportunity that greater investments in agriculture, manufacturing, BPOs, and tourism present. We look forward to presenting the Philippine case again to credit rating agencies and investors now that results affirm the Aquino administration’s core belief that good governance is good economics.