COVID-19 impact: Key industries’ revenues register 12.4 percent negative growth
MANILA, Philippines—The prolonged pandemic-induced recession and quarantine slashed major industries’ revenues as well as private construction projects in the fourth quarter of 2020, the latest Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data showed.
In a report on Thursday (March 18), the PSA said the gross revenue index of major industries slid 12.4 percent year-on-year from October to December 2020, reversing the 3.2-percent growth posted a year ago.
The fourth-quarter contraction in industries’ revenues gradually narrowed compared to the third quarter’s 13.1-percent year-on-year decline and the second quarter’s 26.8-percent fall when 75 percent of the economy went on a standstill as the most stringent COVID-19 lockdown in the region was imposed from mid-March to May 2020.
The PSA said the sectors which posted the biggest drops in revenues included other services (down 32.1 percent year-on-year); transportation, storage and communication (down 29.6 percent); real estate (down 27.3 percent) and electricity, gas and water supply (down 10.9 percent).
As firms earned less, jobs and workers’ salaries also took a hit—the total employment index shrank by 10.3 percent year-on-year and total compensation index declined by 8.7 percent during the fourth quarter of 2020, although at a slower pace compared to contractions in the second and third quarters.
The PSA said most jobs were shred in the sectors of transportation, storage and communication (down 23.6 percent), other services (down 18.3 percent), trade (down 9.8 percent) and real estate (down 3.7 percent).
The biggest pay cuts were inflicted on workers in these sectors: construction (down 27.1 percent), transportation, storage and communication (down 25.2 percent); other services (down 15.7 percent); and trade (down 8.1 percent).
In a separate report on Thursday (March 18), the PSA said the number of construction projects based on building permits nationwide dropped 20.9 percent year-on-year to 31,026 in the fourth quarter of 2020 from 39,242 a year ago.
In terms of value, the P62.96 billion worth of residential, nonresidential, addition and alteration or repair projects was 46.6-percent lower than 2019’s P118.01 billion.
The construction projects started between October and December 2020 will cover 5.78 million square meters of floor area, smaller by 39.6 percent compared to the 9.57 million square meter for projects undertaken during the last three months of 2019.
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