Neda sets 6.2% growth tar­get for PHL by 2017

Business Mirror - - ECONOMY -

ECO­NOMIC Plan­ning Sec­re­tary and Na­tional Eco­nomic and De­vel­op­ment Au­thor­ity (Neda) Di­rec­tor Gen­eral Em­manuel F. Es­guerra said the Philip­pines is ex­pected to re­main one of the fastest-grow­ing economies in Asia, with Manila’s GDP growth tar­geted to reach 6.2 per­cent by 2017.

In his key­note ad­dress be­fore par­tic­i­pants of the se­cond Min­danao Ship­ping Con­fer­ence at the Wa­ter­front In­su­lar Ho­tel in Davao City on Wed­nes­day, Es­guerra said this vi­brant view on the Philip­pine econ­omy is also shared by the pri­vate sec­tor, which fore­casts real GDP growth to reach 5.8 per­cent to 6.3 per­cent by 2017.

“The growth-en­hanced fis­cal space has al­lowed ma­jor in­vest­ments in in­fra­struc­ture, with spend­ing on pub­lic in­fra­struc­ture more than tripling. The bulk of in­vest­ments are slated for trans­porta­tion, cov­er­ing 43 per­cent of to­tal in­fra­struc­ture in­vest­ments from 2013 to 2016 and be­yond, which is es­ti­mated to reach more than P7 tril­lion,” he said.

“This shall be com­ple­mented by pri­vate in­vest­ments in pub­lic in­fra­struc­ture amount­ing to about P1.5 tril­lion, based on the sta­tus of PPP [publicpri­vate part­ner­ship] projects as of April 2016,” Es­guerra added.

He also men­tioned some is­sues on Min­danao sea trans­port sec­tor, which in­cluded the lim­ited ca­pac­ity of Min­danao sea­ports (berthing struc­ture, tran­sit/cargo shed area for no-con­tainer­ized cargo con­tainer yard for con­tainer­ized cargo, and pas­sen­ger ter­mi­nal build­ing) and the need to re­duce do­mes­tic cargo rates given the more ex­pen­sive rates in Min­danao com­pared to for­eign cargo rates.

Fur­ther, with Min­danao play­ing a crit­i­cal role in the Asean Eco­nomic Com­mu­nity, the fol­low­ing sea link­ages need to be es­tab­lished or im­proved: Zam­boanga-San­dakan (Malaysia), Davao/ Gen­eral San­tos-Bi­tung, Manado (In­done­sia), Zam­boanga-Muara (Brunei) and Tawi-Tawi-Tarakan (In­done­sia).

The event, which was or­ga­nized by PortCalls, the Philip­pines’s only ship­ping and trans­port guide, and the Philip­pine In­ter­na­tional Seafreight For­warders As­so­ci­a­tion Inc. (Pisfa), con­vened cargo and for­ward­ing trans­port in­dus­try rep­re­sen­ta­tives and stake­hold­ers from the Min­danao area. Other re­source per­sons in­clude rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Min­danao De­vel­op­ment Au­thor­ity, the Bureau of Cus­toms, Davao In­ter­na­tional Con­tainer Ter­mi­nal, Maersk- Filip­inas Inc., Pisfa and the Davao City Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try Inc.

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