MANILA – Moody’s Analytics forecasts an 0.6-percent expansion for the Philippine economy in the second quarter of 2021, an improvement from the -4.2 percent in the first quarter.
The economic research subsidiary of Moody’s Corporation earlier said it expected a strong rebound for the domestic economy this year, with the full-year growth projected at 5.3 percent, with the phase of recovery largely dependent on pandemic-related developments and the government’s vaccine rollout. 
The government is scheduled to report the second quarter 2021 figure on Tuesday.
Economic managers are confident of an economic rebound for the country this year, with the full-year gross domestic product (GDP) target set between 6 percent to 7 percent. 
Continued vaccination program rollout against the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) and increased infrastructure spending are seen to lift the economy from the 9.5-percent contraction last year. 
These measures are expected to counter the effects of the movement restrictions, economic managers said.
They also vowed to keep the economy as open as possible to ensure that economic activities remain robust. 
Amidst the continued easing of quarantine levels around the country, the government implemented a two-week enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the National Capital Region (NCR) and four nearby provinces namely Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna and Cavite, collectively called the NCR Plus bubble, from March 29 and then a modified ECQ until May 14 to address the surge in Covid-19 infections. 
Another ECQ is now being implemented in Metro Manila that started last Aug. 6 and will run until Aug. 20 to address the rising infection cases, following the discovery of Delta variant-related local transmissions. 
The strictest quarantine level was also implemented for several weeks in the Iloilo province and Iloilo City, as well as in Cagayan de Oro City and Gingoog City until Aug. 7 due also to the surge in Covid-19 cases. (PNA)