By Anna Leah Gonzales

CONTINUED GROWTH. The country’s manufacturing sector continues to grow in October this year. The Philippine Statistics Authority said Thursday (Dec. 7, 2023) that the volume and value of production went up by 1.7 percent and 1.3 percent. (PNA file photo)

MANILA – Factory output both in volume and value continued to grow in October, but at a slower pace than the recorded expansion in September, data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed.

Results of the latest Monthly Integrated Survey of Industries (MISSI) released on Thursday showed that the value of the production index (VaPI) went up by 1.3 percent, slower than the 9.6-percent and 14.5-percent expansion in September this year.

It was also lower than the 14.5-percent growth seen in October last year.

“The slower increment in the annual growth of VaPI during the month was primarily brought about by the double-digit annual drop in the manufacture of beverages industry division at 26.3 percent in September 2023 from 23.1 percent annual increase of in the previous month,” said the PSA.

Other primary contributors to the slower growth of VaPI were the slowdown in the annual increase of the manufacture of coke and refined petroleum products at 36.2 percent from 66.9 percent in the previous month, and the manufacture of computer, electronic, and optical products with an annual drop of 1.3 percent from 4.5 percent annual increment in September.

The volume of production index (VoPI), on the other hand, also grew by 1.7 percent.

It was, however, also lower than the 6.7 percent and 9.9 percent growth in October 2022 and September this year.

“The slower annual decrease of VoPI for manufacture of food products in October 2023 was primarily driven by the annual increase in the manufacture of dairy products industry group at 22.1 percent during the month from 34.9 percent annual decrement in the previous month,” said the PSA.

The average capacity utilization rate for the manufacturing sector went down to 74.3 percent from 74.4 percent in September this year.

The PSA said all industry divisions reported capacity utilization rates of more than 50 percent.

“The top three industry divisions in terms of reported capacity utilization rate were manufacture of machinery and equipment except electrical (83.3 percent), manufacture of rubber and plastic products (81.2 percent), and manufacture of tobacco products (80.5 percent),” it said. (PNA)