Economy grow 6% in 2021 in the Philippines
According to The Manila Times, BDO Unibank Inc. forecasts a slower economic recovery for the Philippines in 2021 after taking into consideration the surge in coronavirus infections in March.
During a virtual economic forum organized by the Italian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines Inc. on March 15, BDO first vice president and chief strategist Jonathan Ravelas said the Sy-led banking giant projected gross domestic product (GDP) to grow by 6 percent in 2021.
“Prior to the start of 2021, we were looking at least a 6.6-percent growth in the economy, primarily driven [by expectations] that we would have probably reopened as early as around this time,” Ravelas said.
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The Manila Times mentions, recent developments indicate that the country’s further reopening “will most likely be pushed” back, with the first-quarter GDP print likely to remain negative, he added.
“So basically we would probably see at least 6-percent growth… The risk with these rising [numbers of] infections and stricter quarantines, I guess, would have an impact on how we see 2021.”
The number of confirmed Covid-19 cases jumped by 4,437 to 631,320, of which 57,736 are active, according to the latest Department of Health data on March 15. Of the total, 560,736 have recovered and 12,848 did not.
The past week has seen the daily infection toll consistently surpassing the 4,000 mark, sparking fears of a return to stricter quarantines. It also prompted local government officials to impose localized lockdowns and a uniform nighttime curfew in an attempt to keep cases from rising.
Ravelas said the government’s vaccination program could gain traction toward the second half of the year, adding that it would also take two to three years before the government inoculates close to 70 million Filipinos.