NEDA sees electronics, manufacturing keeping economy afloat

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said the electronics and manufacturing sectors are proving to be the main drivers of the economy during the pandemic.  

In a televised briefing Friday, NEDA Undersecretary Rosemarie G. Edillon said the electronics sector has been “very resilient during this time,” noting that demand for electronics is rising worldwide.  

Ms. Edillon added that the NEDA sees the manufacturers, specifically those of health-related goods, as among the standouts in the economy 

In a report to President Rodrigo R. Duterte Wednesday, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary and NEDA head Karl Kendrick T. Chua said growth in 2021 and 2022 “remains encouraging.” 

According to Ms. Edillon, this is especially due to the quick response of the labor market to the lifting of lockdown measures.  

“When restrictions are eased, our countrymen return to work quickly,” she said.  

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said Tuesday that the unemployment rate declined to 6.9% in July from 7.7% in June. However, the labor force participation rate fell to 59.8% from 65%.  

As such, Ms. Edillon highlighted the need to safely reopen the economy by focusing on risk management, accelerating vaccinations, and avoiding any “long-term scarring” on any particular industry.  

“We really need to reopen (the industries) that we can reopen right away to avoid or minimize scarring,” she said. 

Ms. Edillon said the effect on gross domestic product (GDP) is around P144 billion for every week of enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), the strictest lockdown setting, in the National Capital Region, Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, and Cavite. The impact of the more lenient modified ECQ (MECQ) is around P74 billion per week. – Bianca Angelica D. Anago 

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