MANILA - The Philippine economy in the second quarter could breach the higher-than-expected 8.3 percent expansion in the previous quarter, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said Thursday.
The BSP on the same day raised the benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points to 2.25 percent as inflation quickens and as the economic recovery gained pace.
The 8.3 percent gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the first quarter breached analysts' expectations and is also the fastest in the ASEAN region.
“We also did not expect the 8.3 percent growth in the first quarter, because of the surge in COVID cases in January. But we got 8.3. We expect Q2 GDP to be higher than Q1," Diokno said in a briefing.
"So we are already on our track to meeting our growth objective of 7 to 9 percent. But we continue to monitor the impact on employment, which is also performing very well. We are fairly close to where we were before the crisis," Diokno said.
Socioeconomic Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua earlier said the 7 to 9 percent growth target for the year is also "doable" given the better-than-expected first-quarter growth.
The GDP needs to grow by 6.6 percent in the next 3 quarters to reach the lower end of the target, he said.
The economy posted its worst economic performance in 2020 after it contracted by 9.6 percent due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It emerged from recession in 2021 with a 5.7 percent growth.
— With a report from Jessica Fenol, ABS-CBN News