The Duterte administration is confident that the reopening of more industries amid the still onging Covid-19 pandemic would result in the “rapid and more inclusive” growth of the Philippine economy, Malacañang said on Tuesday.
This, after the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 7.1 percent in the third quarter of 2021, a reversal from the 11.6-percent contraction posted in the same period last year. but slower than the 12 percent registered in the second quarter of 2021.
In a virtual presser, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the latest GDP growth indicates the country’s economic recovery despite the imposition of stringent quarantine and health protocols from July to September period due to the threat posed by the more transmissible Delta coronavirus variant.
“While it is lower than the 12-percent growth in the second quarter, it is still good news because [the latest growth was recorded] amid the implementation of stricter quarantine measures to fight the Delta variant,” Roque said in Filipino.
Roque said the Duterte government, especially its economic team, is optimistic about the continued recovery of the Philippine economy.
“Our economic team and the entire administration are confident that we will return to the path of rapid and more inclusive growth. It will happen. We just have to give our trust and be careful for our recovery,” he said in Filipino.
Roque, citing the remarks of the country’s economic managers, said the latest economic growth is “among the highest third quarter growths in the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations and the East Asian region.”
He added that the government’s anti-coronavirus strategies led to the continued expansion of many sectors, including the industry and services sectors that grew by 7.9 percent and 8.2 percent, respectively.
“We expect that these, as well as other sectors, will continue to expand because of the reopening of more businesses and the resumption of more economic activities now that Metro Manila is under Alert Level 2,” Roque said in Filipino.
Roque, however, reminded the public not to be complacent, telling them that they still need to observe the minimum public health standards against Covid-19.
He also warned of a possible spike in Covid-19 infections if people fail to follow the health protocols.