Fitch keeps GDP growth forecast for Philippines


Posted at Aug 09 2019 09:55 AM

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MANILA -- Debt-watcher Fitch Ratings said Friday it was keeping its economic growth forecast on the Philippines, with the expansion seen recovering in the second half.

The country's gross domestic product grew 5.5 percent in the second quarter, the lowest in 4 years, due to the delayed passage of the 2019 budget, officials said Thursday. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas cut the benchmark borrowing rate by 25 basis points on the same day.

"We are expecting some pickup in GDP growth in the third quarter and the fourth quarter," said Sagarika Chandra, Fitch associate director for Asia-Pacific sovereigns.

Fitch is also keeping its rating on Philippine sovereign debt at BBB or one notch above minimum investment grade, Chandra said.

The ratings agency is monitoring possible triggers that would lead to revisions to the Philippines' score, she said.