Agriculture contracted 1% in 4th quarter

Agriculture and fisheries production, which accounts for about a tenth of the gross domestic product, contracted by 1 percent in the fourth quarter from a year ago, on lower crop harvests and fisheries output, the Philippine Statistics Authority said Wednesday.

The PSA said while livestock and poultry output grew based on the constant 2018 prices in the fourth quarter, lower production in crops and fisheries fell in the period covering the months of October to December.

“At current prices, the value of production in agriculture and fisheries amounted to P611.52 billion or 9.4 percent higher compared to the level in the same period last year,” the PSA said. The growth in current prices reflected the higher inflation in the fourth quarter.

“From January to December 2022, the value of production in agriculture and fisheries at constant 2018 prices dropped by -0.1 percent,” the PSA said.

Data showed that crop harvests, which accounted for 59.1 percent of the total value of production in agriculture and fisheries, fell 1.0 percent in the fourth quarter, as rice and corn output went down by 2.5 percent and 6.9 percent, respectively.

Livestock, with a 14.3 percent share to the total value of the sector’s production, grew by 2.5 percent while poultry production picked up 1.8 percent.

Fisheries, with 13.8-percent share in the total value of the sector, saw a 6.6-percent decline.

Meanwhile, the PSA maintained the third-quarter gross domestic product growth of 7.6 percent despite some changes in all industries except public administration and defense and compulsory social activities.

It said changes were observed in the growth of real estate and ownership of dwellings from 3.1 percent to 3.6 percent; financial and insurance activities, from 7.7 percent to 7.9 percent, and manufacturing, from 3.6 percent to 3.8 percent.

The growth rate of net primary income from the rest of the world recorded an upward revision from 94.6 percent to 95.1 percent. Meanwhile, the growth in gross national income in the third quarter was retained at 10.5 percent.

The PSA said it revises the GDP estimates based on an approved revision policy which is consistent with international standard practices on national accounts revisions.

The 7.6 percent third-quarter growth brought the average expansion in the first three quarters to 7.7 percent, overtaking bigger economies in the region and surpassing the target range of 6.5 percent to 7.5 percent for the year.

The PSA will release the fourth-quarter growth on Thursday.

Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno said earlier the Philippine economy likely ended 2022 strongly despite the domestic and global headwinds that threatened to stifle further growth.

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