Imports surged 13.2% in December

PH ends 2012 with trade deficit of $9.66B


Imports surged 13.2 percent in December to $5.25 billion, revving up from the 2.3-percent growth the previous month and reversing the 6.4-percent contraction in December 2011, the National Statistics Office (NSO) reported Tuesday.

NSO documents showed that for the full year, imports grew 1.9 percent to $61.66 billion. This placed total external trade—the combined value of outbound and inbound goods—for 2012 at $113.66 billion, or an increase of 4.5 percent from the previous year’s level.

The trade balance was still in favor of the rest of the world with the Philippines posting a deficit of $9.66 billion, but still better than the $12.19-billion gap recorded in 2011.

Compared to November imports valued at $5.14 billion, shipments in December represented an increase of 2.1 percent.

According to the National Economic and Development Authority, the NSO’s parent agency, growth in payments for capital goods, consumer goods, raw materials and intermediate goods boosted imports in December.

“The improvement in imports performance during the period partly reflects the favorable sentiments of both businesses and consumers,” said Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan, who is also director general of Neda.

Balisacan said in a statement that inbound shipments of capital goods rose 40.2 percent in December, which was attributed to increased deliveries of aircraft purchased by Cebu Pacific.

“The higher receipts from imported consumer goods were due in part to the more favorable sentiments of consumers, specifically towards durable items,” Balisacan said.

“Higher importation of raw materials and intermediate goods was partly due to heightened optimism among importers that demand for goods would increase in the near-term because of additional projects, business expansion and continued investor confidence,” he added.

NSO documents showed that electronic products accounted for 24.6 percent of total imports in December, with the value rising 1.7 percent year-on-year to $1.29 billion. Semiconductor devices and parts made up about 18 percent of all electronic shipments, growing in value by 4.7 percent to $938.1 million. Electronic imports in December increased by 2.3 percent from $1.26 billion in November.

December shipments of mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials—the country second-biggest purchase—fell 16.1 percent year-on-year to $880.8 million.

The country’s third-largest import for the month, transport equipment, nearly tripled to $698.2 million.

Fourth were industrial machinery and equipment, payments for which increased by 5.3 percent to $264.65 million. In fifth place were metal ores and scrap, which grew by about eight and a half times to $194.69 million.

The United States was the top source of imports for the month, accounting for 16 percent of total cargo or $839.11 million— a year-on-year increase of 62 percent.

China was second with an 11.4-percent share valued at $598.24 million, or an increase of 2.4 percent.

Japan placed third with 8.7 percent of all inbound cargo in December valued at $455.08 million, or 22.4-percent lower than last year’s bill.

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  • Ronnel L

    this is the only country i know that is rejoicing a surge in import. the government should focus on reducing the trade deficit hence, less import and more export…the reason why we still have a current account surplus despite a big trade deficit is only due to big OFW remittance. if the remittance is reduced then we will see a deficit in our current account balance.

  • ApoLapullapu

    What was the average import growth rate from January to November 2012?

  • ApoLapullapu

    I would like to see Industrial Machinery and Equipment to top the list of imports while the Peso value is high.

  • WeAry_Bat

    He he he. Isn’t it natural for importers to get in as much as they can at the months where the peso is stronger than the dollar.  Christmas is the usual time when OFW money comes in.

    Thus if importers have the time, like machinery and equipment not having expiry dates, the last month is the best month to import.  This will only be spoiled if BIR tries to cash in on it by having extra taxes for December be made into law.  This shouldn’t happen because tax is already a percentage which varies commensurately with the amount.

    All the other months in 2011 by comparison were below 5 percent with exception of September 2011 which from the imports, I surmised were for making products ahead of perceived Christmas sales.

    Oh its lunch time…

  • Franzeline Perdubal

    We were a great country before Marcos. We were the crown of Asia.

    It’s time to work for our new glory days! Bawal ang talangka sa bagong Pilipinas.

    • ApoLapullapu

      If we keep blaming Marcos, we cannot move forward.  Let;s settle on the new scapegoat – the small girl in neck braces.

      • Franzeline Perdubal

        IF you keep on forgetting history, you’re doomed to repeat it.

      • gardy_versozi

        you don’t know history, you ignorant fool.

      • Franzeline Perdubal

        Dyan ka magaling sa name calling. I never saw an intelligent post from you, garding vading.

      • gardy_versozi

        that’s because you’re not intelligent. reklamo ka ng reklamo sa ‘name calling’ pero you’re doing it too, moron. LOL

  • joe__bloggs

    “The improvement in imports performance during the period partly reflects the favorable sentiments of both businesses and consumers,” said Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan.
    He makes it sound like what the country really needs. But it is a $10 Billion trade deficit – we have bought /traded more than what we have sold the rest of the world by this amount. Is this sustainable?

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