The Philippine Board of Investments reported that manufacturing output has rebounded, based on recent data released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) and IHS-Markit.
The industry stabilizes as manufacturing output sees an upside in the months ahead with the ongoing rollout of the vaccination program and ease of quarantines, the Department of Trade and Industry – Board of Investments (DTI-BOI) said.
The PSA said factory output registered a 162.1% growth year-on-year (YoY) for April 2021 in its monthly integrated survey of selected industries (MISSI) report in the volume of production index (VoPI), which reversed the 73.3% decline the previous month (March) and a leap forward in contrast with the 64.8% downturn in April 2020.
Meanwhile, IHS Markit reported that the country’s purchasing managers’ index (PMI)in April has indicated a swift movement towards stabilization with some businesses already resuming operations. Further, softer declines in output and new orders signaled a step in the right direction, while a renewed increase in overseas demand also supported the sector.
“We welcome these encouraging developments. Our capacity utilization inched up to 63.6% in April from 63% the previous month. This shows a huge increase and we see a continuing increase in the months ahead,” Trade Secretary and BOI Chairperson Ramon Lopez said.
He added, “This was because of the more permissive quarantine restrictions we implemented this year as we gradually reopen the economy. Even under the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) in March and Modified ECQ (MECQ) in April of this year, there was a higher operating capacity for manufacturing and exports. Despite the restrictions, we kept the economy moving and limited the lockdowns to the non-essential sectors.”
The PSA explained that 20 of the 22 manufacturing sectors posted YoY increases in production volume for April, with basic metals posting the fasting growth of 687.5% and only the refined petroleum products and pharmaceuticals recording declines.
The IHS Markit, for its part, said that despite a soft decline in orders for May 2021, there are signs that the overall picture in terms of product demand is already improving with declines easing at marginal figures. This is as orders from foreign markets continue to rise significantly due to the relaxing of restrictions globally as other countries have already accelerated their vaccination.