Philippines Trade Deficit Widens in December


In December of 2012, the Balance of Trade for the Philippines registered a deficit of $1.275 billion, as exports reached $3.971 billion and imports expanded to $5.246 billion. Total external trade in goods for December of 2012 reached $9.216 billion, representing a 14.6 percent increase from $8.040 billion recorded during the same month in 2011.

The increase can be attributed to the 16.5 percent positive growth of exports to $3.971 billion from $3.407 billion in the same month a year ago. The sustained increment was supported by the positive year-on-year change in bananas (fresh), petroleum products, metal components, tuna, woodcrafts and furniture. Also, total imports expanded by 13.2 percent to $5.246 billion from $4.633 billion in December of 2011. Thus, the balance of trade in goods for the Philippines in December of 2012 registered a deficit of $1.275 billion from $1.226 billion deficit in the same period last year.

Japan represented 18.0 percent share of the total exports for December of 2012, emerged as the country’s top destination of exports with revenue amounting to $715.29 million. It was higher by 12.7 percent compared with $634.87 million recorded a year ago. The export items to Japan consist mainly of wood manufactures and components/devices (semiconductors). United States of America with 12.7 percent share to total exports followed as the second top market of the country for December of 2012 with export earnings worth $502.31 million. This represented a decrease of 5.9 percent from $533.92 million reported a year earlier. Electronic products particularly components/devices (semiconductors) and garments are the goods mostly exported to USA. People’s Republic of China, accounting for 10.5 percent share to total exports, came in third with shipments amounting to $417.18 million.

United States of America was Philippines main source of imported goods in December of 2012 with 16.0 percent share. Payments were recorded at $839.11 million, an increase of 61.6 percent from $519.20 million in December of 2011.  The increase in the inward purchases from USA includes importation of aeroplanes, semiconductors and feeding stuff for animals. Following USA as top source of the country’s imports was People’s Republic of China, with 11.4 percent share to the total import bill amounting to $598.24 million, higher by 2.4 percent from $584.34 million in December of 2011. Commodities imported from China were mineral products such as liquefied petroleum gas and aviation spirit and agricultural products like apples and mandarins.

For the full year of 2012, aggregate imports went up by 1.9 percent to $61.660 million from $60.496 billion for 2011. Cumulative merchandise exports for January to December of 2012 recorded a positive growth of 7.6 percent to $51.994 billion from $48.305 billion posted during the same period of 2011.


National Statistics Office | Joana Taborda | joana.taborda@tradingeconomics.com
2/26/2013 10:25:40 AM