MANILA (Mabuhay) – The Philippines on Friday lowered its import-export targets for 2014, citing lingering uncertainties in global demand – particularly from advanced economies led by the United States, a member of the Cabinet-level Development Budget Coordination Committee said.
The DBCC, which manages the Philippine macroeconomic program, cut the exports target to 6 percent from 11 percent as originally programmed and brought import goal to 5 percent from 13 percent.
The revisions were done after giving the latest demand indicators were given a closer look and Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas modified the computations for the balance of payments, said Socio-Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balicasan, who sits on the budget committee.
However, Budget and Management Secretary Florencio Abad, who also chairs the DBCC, said government is keeping its 2 percent deficit to GDP (gross domestic product) target for 2014, citing the Philippines’ strong fiscal position and better tax collections.
The Aquino administration has enough leeway to absorb additional expenditures to cover post-Yolanda reconstruction while keeping deficit spending within original target, he added. (MNS)