By Jochebed B. Gonzales, Senior Researcher THE country’s trade deficit expanded in April on account of declining merchandise exports and a double-digit surge in inbound shipments, the government reported on Friday. Preliminary results from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed merchandise exports declining 8.5% to $5.115 billion in April, lower than the 6.8% contraction posted in March and a far cry from the 30.4% growth in April 2017. This was the worst turnout since the 10.9% decrease logged in July 2016. The latest merchandise export figure brought year-to-date receipts to $20.955 billion, down 6.2% from $22.344 billion in the same four months last year and below the government’s 10% target for 2018. By major type of goods, manufactured goods — which make up 84.2% of the country’s total export goods — slid 6.3% to $4.306 billion. “The decline was tempered by a 5.5% expansion in exports of electronic products,” the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said in a separate statement. Exports of electronic products, according to PSA, was valued at $2.975 billion, representing 58.2% share to total receipts in April. “The increase in exports of electronic manufactures was led by faster growth of semiconductors (5.3%), compared with the 3.1%… Read full this story
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