Philippines’ GDP growth rises to 5.6 percent

Manila, Aug 27 (IANS) The Philippines’ gross domestic product (GDP)grew 5.6 percent in the second quarter of this year, up from five percent in the first quarter, presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said on Thursday.

The figure is much lower than the 6.7 percent recorded in the same period last year. But Lacierda said it was still higher compared to many Asian countries, including Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand, Xinhua reported.

Budget secretary Florencio Abad said the growth, though minimal, was an achievement in itself given the current volatility of the global market.

He said the latest GDP growth was driven by the robust government spending in the second quarter which is part of efforts from different agencies to catch up on their spending programs.

“Our challenge now is to exceed ourselves in the coming quarters. More than ever, it will be crucial for us to ramp up disbursements and clear more spending bottlenecks, so we can stimulate the economy towards further growth,” he added.

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