Economy chief says Q2 growth won't be too far from Q1


Posted at Aug 18 2010 02:50 PM | Updated as of Aug 18 2010 10:50 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Socio-economic planning Secretary Cayetano Paderanga said he hoped growth in the second quarter would be not too far from the 7.3%  annual growth rate in the first quarter, despite weakness in the farm sector.

The first quarter growth was the fastest annual rate since the second quarter of 2007, driven by spending related to national elections in May, government pump-priming and a turnaround in exports.

Seasonally adjusted growth in the March quarter was 3%, a 22-year high.

The government is set to release second quarter GDP data on Aug. 26, hours before the central bank reviews policy rates.

The Philippine economy is largely driven by consumption, fuelled partly by billions of dollars in remittances sent home yearly by Filipinos working overseas.

The government expects the economy to grow 5 to 6% this year before rising 7 to 8% next year.

Paderanga said earlier this month growth could be above target in 2010 on a recovery in trade and strong remittance inflows.