MANILA (Xinhua) – The Philippine Trade Department projected an export growth of at least 10 per cent in 2015 on confidence in the electronics sector and the recent inclusion of the Philippines in the European Union’s Generalised System of Preference Plus (GSP+), a senior official said on Wednesday.
“We also see continued strength in electronic exports,” Trade Secretary Gregory L Domingo said.
The electronics sector is expected to rebound in 2015 with growth expectations of 6-8 per cent from an estimated 11 per cent incremental growth in 2014, according to Domingo.
The increasing requirement for semiconductors, microchips and other similar products started coming in the last quarter of 2014.
In 2013, the industry output declined 3.97 per cent to 21.8 billion US dollars from 22.7 billion US dollars in 2012.
Domingo added that the Philippines being one of the preferred beneficiaries of the EU-GSP+ stands to gain an additional 611.8 million euro (745.13 million US dollars) in exports to the EU during the first year.
The trade arrangement that will take effect on Dec 25, allows the entry of more than 4,000 tariff lines or commodities to the EU at zero tariff.
Industries consulted on the impact of GSP+ projected that this program will create over 200,000 new jobs in both agriculture and manufacturing sectors, mostly in the rural areas.
Among the tariff lines that will benefit most from GSP+ are animal or vegetable fats and oils, prepared foodstuffs, textiles and garments, footwear, headwear, umbrellas, and chemical products.
In the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, a 10-member regional bloc, the Philippines is the only beneficiary country of the EU GSP+ programme.