PH grew faster than 6% in 2012 – Aquino

President Benigno Aquino III hinted that the country grew faster than 6% in 2012, ahead of the January 31 official announcement of the 2012 gross domestic product (GDP) performance of the country

ECONOMIC LEADERS. Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan (left) and President Aquino chat during Neda's 40th anniversary on January 29. Photo by Malacañang bureau

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – President Benigno Aquino III hinted that the country grew faster than 6% in 2012, ahead of the January 31 official announcement of the 2012 gross domestic product (GDP) performance of the country.

“I think all of us will be impressed,” Aquino told reporters at the 40th anniversary of the National Economic Development Authority (Neda) on Tuesday, January 29.

When pressed further if the GDP growth for the year will exceed the higher end of the 5% to 6% target for 2012, Aquino replied, “Definitely, according to our Neda Director General (Arsenio Balisacan).”

Balisacan, also the Socioeconomic Planning Secretary, told reporters that it is possible the economy grew 6.5% in the 4th quarter and “at least 6%” for the entire year.

Using data from the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB), the economy grew 6.5% in the first 3 quarters of 2012. If the 4th quarter grew by 6.5%, it is possible that full year growth will be at 6.5% in 2012.

Domestic spending has driven growth in 2012, particularly in the 4th quarter, when Christmas spending is enough to boost growth to possibly 6.5%.

“Anything above 6% is impressive considering that we are only targeting 5% to 6% and the global uncertainties are still there. It’s really an impressive economic performance,” Balisacan said.

“There are favorable signs, especially in the 3rd quarter. Investment is picking up. We hope to see that in the 4th quarter and the coming quarters. We need to get our economy more diversified increasingly moving from consumption to investment (and) exports so we can maximize the foundations of growth in the economy,” he explained. – Rappler.com

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