Total trade shrinks in April, first full month of virus lockdown


Posted at Jun 10 2020 10:09 AM | Updated as of Jun 10 2020 10:29 AM

Container vans stacked together are seen inside the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) compound in Manila on April 1, 2020. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA - The Philippines' total external trade shrank further in April, the first full month of lockdown against COVID-19, government data released Wednesday showed.

Total external trade dropped 59.8 percent to $6.07 billion in April, steeper than the 25.6-percent decline in March, the Philippine Statistics Authority said.

Exports in April fell 50.8 percent to $2.78 billion from $5.65 billion in the same month last year, the PSA said. Imports fell 65.3 percent to $3.28 billion during the same comparable period, it said.

Bulk of the country's exports for April went to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation members while China has the highest import value followed by Japan, Korea, USA and Taiwan. 

The import value of personal protective equipment and medical supplies, used to fight the coronavirus pandemic, reached $20.9 million or an annual growth of 37.9 percent, data showed.