Philippine central bank sees wider current account surpluses on economic recovery


MANILA, June 19 (Reuters): The Philippines is expected to post bigger current account surpluses for this year and 2022, the central bank said on Friday, due to better prospects for trade in goods and services as the global economy recovers from the pandemic shock.

The central bank raised its 2021 projection for the current account surplus to US$10 billion, or 2.5% of gross domestic product (GDP), from its previous forecast of US$9.1 billion, or 2.3% of GDP.

For next year, the current account surplus was expected to reach US$6.7 billion, or 1.5% of GDP, also wider than the earlier estimate of $5.2 billion, or 1.2% of GDP, central bank managing director Zeno Abenoja told a news conference.

An improving global economy should drive 10% growth in exports of goods this year, higher than the central bank's 8% estimate in March, and then 6.0% growth next year, Abenoja said.

The central bank predicted that imports of goods this year and next year would grow 12% and 10%, respectively, as domestic demand recovers in line with a gradual reopening of the economy, which should allow for more business activity.

This year's balance of payment surplus was forecast to reach US$7.1 billion, up from the projected US$6.2 billion in March, before narrowing to US$2.7 billion next year.

The central bank's also raised its estimate for foreign exchange reserves this year to US$115 billion from US$114 billion. - Reuters
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Philippines , Central Bank , Balancing , Act , Economy , Surplus


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