Albay 2nd District Rep. Joey Salceda (File photo)

MANILA – The 7.6 percent growth of the Philippine economy in the third quarter of the year showed that the economy under the administration of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. is showing signs of strong growth amid the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and the Ukraine conflict, Albay 2nd District Rep. Joey Salceda said Thursday.

“It’s a Boom Boom economy. As this report is the first quarterly report of the Marcos administration, allow me to say that it’s PBBM’s economy now. And it is showing signs of exceptional strength amid global headwinds,” Salceda said in a statement.

Salceda added that while the gross domestic product (GDP) growth for the quarter exceeded the consensus of economists of 6.2 percent for the quarter, his office had projected a 7.5 percent growth prior to the official release, with Ateneo de Manila University projecting a growth of 7.7 percent.

“So, it’s not a fluke. This growth is real,” said the chair of the House Ways and Means Committee.

Salceda said growth was evident in the Google Mobility Report for member-countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which showed the country growth with 34 percent more mobility in retail and 38 percent more in workplaces.

“This is the highest mobility growth in ASEAN – which shows that we were always in the running to have the strongest growth in the region,” he noted.

Remittance figures for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) also jumped in August, near the end of the quarter. Data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed cash remittances sent through banks stood at USD 2.72 billion in August, higher than the USD 2.60 billion a year earlier. The growth in remittances was the fastest since 4.4 percent in June.

“That boosted household consumption,” Salceda pointed out.

He said the 24.79-percent year-on-year growth in tax collections in September indicated that economic activity -- the base of taxation -- was getting stronger.

The September jobs report also showed that the largest year-on-year jobs gainer was manufacturing, at 1.09 million more jobs.

Salceda likewise said manufacturing jobs growth tends to indicate positive macroeconomic fundamentals.

“In total, 4 million jobs were created year-on-year by September. Likewise, 1.5 million freelancers with foreign employers are not being accounted for in full in the national income accounts. In other words, the signs of strong growth were there,” he said.

He also noted that all demand areas posted quarter-on-quarter growth, indicating that there is momentum for growth. This is especially true with the 4th quarter, a high-demand quarter due to Christmas spending and bonuses.

“We can sustain this growth, especially given the Marcos administration’s shift from pandemic to endemic mode for Covid-19,” Salceda said. “President Marcos’s first year in office will probably notch the strongest GDP performance in the region, and one of the best in Asia.”

Started to pay off

House Speaker Martin Romualdez said the 7.6 percent GDP showed that Marcos’s efforts to overturn the pandemic-stricken economy of the country have started to pay off.

"President Marcos' silent hard work on uplifting the economy is beginning to work. The economic expansion in the months of July to September 2022 is proof of that," Romualdez said in a separate statement.

He said he has witnessed how the President engaged with business stakeholders here and abroad with the purpose of recovering from the ravages caused by the pandemic.

"Truly our mindset is now in the endemic phase in terms of our economic strategy. The House of Representatives will follow through with this emerging policy so we may build on this economic growth. The Chief Executive has indeed shown us the right direction," he said. (with reports from Zaldy De Layola/PNA)