Philippines set for rebound, pandemic impact 'transitory' - economic managers

Reuters

Posted at Jul 12 2021 10:59 PM | Updated as of Jul 12 2021 11:00 PM

Philippines set for rebound, pandemic impact 'transitory' - economic managers 1

MANILA - The Philippines is set for an economic rebound, with medium-term growth prospects on solid footing, its economic managers said on Monday, after Fitch Ratings affirmed the country's investment-grade score but downgraded its outlook to negative.

Fiscal and monetary policies are in place to support recovery of the Philippine economy, one of Asia's fastest-growing before the pandemic, officials said.

"We expect the drag caused by COVID-19 on the Philippine economy to be transitory," Philippines' central bank Governor Benjamin Diokno said in a statement, commenting on Fitch.

A weakening Philippine peso and potential rate hikes by the U.S. Federal Reserve are not a cause for concern, with the central bank committed to retain a market-determined foreign exchange rate and an accommodative monetary policy to support the economy, Diokno said earlier on Monday.

In downgrading its outlook on the Philippines, Fitch said there were increasing risks to the credit profile, while fiscal finances have weakened, both as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. (Full Story)

"Although the negative impact of the pandemic on the Philippines has been significant, this will only be temporary," Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez said in the statement.

The economy is seen to have posted double-digit growth in the second quarter of this year, he added.

The Philippines, which is battling one of the region's worst coronavirus epidemics, aims to vaccinate 50 to 70 million of its 110 million population this year to safely reopen the economy, which contracted by a record 9.6 percent in 2020.

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