The Philippines: Typhoons to further dent 2020 GDP]

  • DAMAGE CAUSED by the recent string of typhoons and massive floods is estimated to shave 0.15 percentage point off the already grim gross domestic product (GDP) outlook for 2020, preliminary estimates by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) showed.
  • NEDA Undersecretary Rosemarie G. Edillon estimated the five typhoons that struck the country in 4Q20 — Pepito, Quinta, Rolly, Siony and Ulysses — may have caused PHP90bn in output losses so far, or equivalent to a reduction to the full-year GDP by 0.15 percentage point.
  • The economic team is currently reviewing its forecast of a 4.5-6.6% drop in GDP in 2020, after the economy contracted by 10% in the first nine months.
  • In an online briefing, Ms. Edillon said initial estimates showed the damage caused by Typhoon Ulysses, which caused heavy flooding in parts of Cagayan Valley and Metro Manila on the week of 8 Nov 20, were still lower compared with that of Typhoon Ondoy in 2009.
  • Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said the government’s fiscal response remains on track.
  • “What we are really facing is a problem of people’s confidence in the system, no matter what fiscal response you have, if you don’t have confidence, no one is going to spend. So essentially, we are looking at increasing people’s confidence in not getting sick and making sure that they understand that the health infrastructure of the government can support whoever gets sick,” he said in a separate online briefing.

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