'Don't panic': Philippines 'strong' in face of virus risk, says analyst


Posted at Feb 27 2020 10:37 AM | Updated as of Feb 27 2020 10:53 AM

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MANILA — The long-term outlook for investments in the Philippines remains "very strong," despite the short-term risk from the coronavirus outbreak, an analyst said Thursday.

Should the outbreak stretch to June, it could shave 50 basis points off gross domestic product growth due to slowdowns in exports, manufacturing and tourism, said ATR Asset Management head of equities Julian Tarrobago.

However, the Philippines is on track to cut corporate income taxes and ease foreign ownership caps, which could entice investors, Tarrobago told ANC's Market Edge.

"We don't think this is the time to panic," Tarroboago said. "We believe the fundamental growth story for the Philippines is very much intact."

"COVID-19 puts clearly at risk our short-term forecasts but the long-term strategy and outlook is still very strong for the Philippines," he said.

Philippine shares rebounded at the start of trading Thursday, after falling the most in 4 years during the previous day's session. Elsewhere in Asia, stocks fell on worries over the coronavirus.