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Exports from the Philippines increased by 6% in April.

MANILA, Philippines — According to preliminary figures from the Philippine Statistics Authority, Philippine merchandise exports increased by 6% in April, hitting USD6.1 billion (PSA).

Coconut products accounted for USD164 million of the USD348 million in additional exports in April 2022, or 47% of the month’s incremental export sales. Exports of coconut oil, which increased 2.5 times from the previous year, were a major contributor.

Coconut oil exports have been expanding at double-digit rates since February 2021.

Export sales climbed by USD2.1 billion in the first four months of this year compared to the same period last year. Sales of coconut goods account for a fourth of these new exports.

Exports climbed by 8.9% to USD25.6 billion in 2021, up from USD23.5 billion the previous year. According to early statistics from the PSA, April 2022 will be 14.5 percent higher than the pre-pandemic average of 2017 to 2019.

President Rodrigo Duterte signed the Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Plan (CFIDP) through Executive Order No. 172 on June 2, 2022.

To achieve social fairness, the CFIDP strives to boost overall productivity and income of coconut farmers, reduce poverty, and modernize and rehabilitate the coconut sector.

“In the coconut sector, the Philippines is regarded as a global leader. “With the approval of CFIDP, our local coconut industry, particularly our farmers, will be able to benefit from government support programs that will enable the sector to strengthen its competitiveness through the development and promotion of more innovative coconut-based products,” DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said in a statement.

The coconut industry will also benefit from export marketing assistance via the Philippines-European Union (EU) ARISE Plus Project, which is being executed by the International Trade Centre (ITC) and the DTI-Export Marketing Bureau (EMB).

Coconut exporters will gain access to market research, capacity-building workshops focused on sales negotiations, digital marketing and branding, and market linkages through participation in trade fairs and business matching activities as part of the initiative.

As the Philippine government continues to relax public health restrictions, major improvements in economic circumstances have been noticed.

According to the Philippines’ Manufacturing Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI), the country’s manufacturing sector had its best month in nearly four years in April, as production and new orders both improved.

The Philippines’ PMI increased to 54.3 in April from 53.2 in March, according to S&P Global Philippines.

“The Duterte administration’s post-pandemic economic recovery efforts are proving to be effective, as seen by the continued growth of our PMI.” There were various factors that led to this development, but the most important is the solid expansion of outputs, which has resulted in our consistent export performance,” Lopez remarked.

A total of 32 of the country’s 48 commodity groups are still driving the country’s export recovery, with steady gains in export sales compared to three time periods: 2021, 2020, and the pre-pandemic average throughout 2017-2019.

Electronics, including other electronics, mineral goods, copper cathodes and parts of cathodes, coconut oil, and chemicals, are driving this development.

Electronics remain the country’s most important export, accounting for 59.8% of total exports year-to-date (YTD) in January-April.

Philippine electronics exports of components/devices (semiconductors), control and instrumentation, and automotive electronics all grew by double digits.

Based on both year-over-year and year-to-date figures, telecommunication product exports more than tripled in April 2022.

From January to April 2022, the Philippines’ largest export market was the United States, with USD3.95 billion in exports, closely followed by China, with USD3.85 billion in exports.

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