MANILA: Exports and imports in the Philippines increased in August 2017, preliminary data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed. The PSA said on Tuesday, October 10, that total imports payments went up by 10.5% to $7.92 billion in August 2017, from $7.17 billion in the same month a year ago. Meanwhile, total export receipts reached $5.51 billion, up 9.3% from $5.04 billion. (READ: Foreign direct investments in PH drop to one-year low in July) This brought the country’s balance of trade in goods to a $2.41-billion deficit in August, from $2.13 billion a year ago.
The PSA said electronic products remained the top imported commodities, accounting for 25% of the total import bill. It slightly increased by 0.7% to $11.065 billion in the 1st semester of 2017, from $10.984 billion in the same period in 2016. Mineral fuels, lubricants, and related materials ranked 2nd, comprising 11.5% of the total imports, and increasing by 30.6% to $5.106 billion in the 1st semester of 2017 from $3.909 billion in the same period in 2016. Transport equipment, meanwhile, ranked 3rd with a 10.5% share. It increased by 13.7% to $4.673 billion in the 1st semester of 2017 from $4.109 billion. China was the Philippines’ top trading partner during the period with trade worth $11.355 billion or 15% of the total trade, according to the PSA. Export receipts from China stood at $3.308 billion, while payment for imports was valued at $8.048 billion, resulting in a $4.740-billion trade deficit. Export-wise, the PSA said the biggest sales came from electronic products at $1.993 billion or 60.3% of the Philippines’ exports to China.