External Trade Performance : March 2012

Reference Number: 

2012-037

Release Date: 

Friday, May 25, 2012

EXTERNAL TRADE PERFORMANCE
March 2012

(Preliminary)

p - preliminary
r - revised

MARCH 2012 TOTAL TRADE STANDS AT $9.694 BILLION

Total external trade in goods for March 2012 reached $9.694 billion, representing a 2.2 percent decrease from $9.909 billion recorded during the same month in 2011. This was due to the 3.3 percent downward trend of total imports from $5.553 billion to $5.371 billion in March 2012. Similarly, exports showed a 0.8 percent decrement from $4.356 billion to $4.323 billion in March 2012. Thus, the balance of trade in goods (BOT-G) for the Philippines in March 2012 registered a deficit of $1.049 billion from $1.196 billion deficit in the same period last year.

Figure 2A Philippine Trade Performance in January - March : 2012 and 2011
(F.O.B. Value in Million US Dollars)

Figure 2B Philippine Trade Performance in March : 2012 and 2011
(F.O.B. Value in Million US Dollars)

MARCH 2012 IMPORTS DOWN BY 3.3 PERCENT

The country’s total merchandise imports for March 2012 went down by 3.3 percent from $5.553 billion to $5.371 billion. However, it increased by 7.5 percent compared to previous month’s level to $4.996 billion. Aggregate imports went down by 1.5 percent from $15.732 billion value in the first three-month period in 2011 to $15.501 billion for the same three months of 2012.

MINERAL FUELS, LUBRICANTS AND RELATED MATERIALS ACCOUNTS FOR 28.7 PERCENT OF IMPORT BILL

Accounting for 28.7 percent of the aggregate import bill, payments for Mineral Fuels, Lubricants and Related Materials in March 2012 amounted to $1.543 billion and registered the highest annual growth rate of 74.4 percent among the top ten imports from $884.45 million in March 2011. Similarly on a monthly basis, it also grew by 53.4 percent from $1.006 billion recorded in February 2012.

Imports of Electronic Products (including consigned and direct importation using the expanded coverage of electronic products) ranked second with 23.4 percent share and posted a negative annual growth rate of 38.7 percent from reported value of $2.054 billion in March 2011 to $1.259 billion in March 2012. Among the major groups of electronic products, Components/Devices (Semiconductors) having the biggest share of 17.3 percent decreased by 47.1 percent from $1.755 billion to $928.39 million.

Transport Equipment was the PH’s third top import for the month with 6.1 percent share to total imports valued at $327.85 million. This figure was up by 26.8 percent from previous year level of $258.64 million.

Industrial Machinery and Equipment contributing 4.7 percent to the total import bill was fourth top import for the month amounting to $252.76 million. It accelerated by 3.6 percent compared to last year’s $243.91 million.

Fifth in rank and with 2.7 percent share to the total imports was Organic and Inorganic Chemicals, recorded $145.54 million worth of imports, lower by 11.2 percent from its year ago level of $163.92 million.

Rounding up the list of the top ten imports for March 2012 were Plastics in Primary and Non-Primary Forms registered $140.95 million; Cereals and Cereal Preparations valued at $126.37 million; Iron and Steel amounting to $117.47 million; Telecommunication Equipment and Electrical Machinery, $106.37 million; and Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Products, $84.79 million.

Aggregate payment for the country’s top ten imports for March 2012 reached $4.104 billion or 76.4 percent of the total import bill.

RAW MATERIALS AND INTERMEDIATE GOODS ACCOUNT FOR 34.9 PERCENT OF THE TOTAL IMPORTS

Accounting for 34.9 percent of the total imports, payments in March 2012 for Raw Materials and Intermediate Goods amounted to $1.876 billion or 33.1 percent decrement over last year's figure of $2.805 billion. Compared to the previous month’s level, purchases went up by 8.1 percent from $1.735 billion. Semi-Processed Raw Materials had the biggest share of 30.5 percent and valued at $1.640 billion.

Mineral Fuels, Lubricant and Related Materials with 28.7 percent share to total imports increased by 74.4 percent from $884.45 million to $1.543 billion in March 2012.

Capital Goods, which comprised 24.4 percent of the total imports, went up by 5.4 percent year-on-year to $1.312 billion from $1.245 billion.

Purchases of Consumer Goods amounted to $593.79 million or a positive growth of 6.7 percent from $556.54 million in March 2011 while Special Transactions went down by 24.3 percent from $61.79 million to $46.76 million in March 2012.

IMPORTS FROM JAPAN ACCOUNTS FOR 10.9 PERCENT

Japan including Okinawa was the country’s biggest source of imports for March 2012 with 10.9 percent share of the total import bill amounting to $583.43 million, higher by 1.3 percent from $576.12 million in March 2011. Exports to Japan amounted to $685.17 million, yielding a two-way trade value of $1.269 billion and a trade surplus for PH of $101.74 million.

People’s Republic of China came second,accounting for 10.5 percent share of the total import bill in March 2012 with positive growth of 11.5 percent to $562.49 million from $504.69 million. Exports to People’s Republic of China amounted to $642.07 million resulting to a total trade value of $1.205 billion and a trade surplus of $79.58 million.

Saudi Arabia ranked third among the top sources of imports for the country accounting for 9.5 percent share of the total import bill in March 2012 and a positive growth of 124.8 percent with $507.85 million from $225.91 million in March 2011. However, exports to Saudi Arabia amounted only to $3.87 million resulting to a total trade value of $511.72 million and a trade deficit of $503.98 million.

United States of America (USA) including Alaska and Hawaii was fourth among the top sources of imports with 9.1 percent share. Payments were recorded at $489.94 million, a decrease of 23.5 percent from $640.72 million in March 2011. Revenue from PH’s exports to USA, on the other hand, reached $668.25 million, generating a total trade value of $1.158 billion and $178.31 million trade surplus for the Philippines.

Fifth in rank was Singapore, representing 6.8 percent of the total import bill in March 2012 or a decrease of 30.6 percent from $524.12 million during the same month in 2011 to $363.54 million this year. Exports to Singapore amounted to $410.35 million resulting to a total trade value of $773.89 million and a trade surplus of $46.82 million.

Other major sources of imports for the month of March 2012 were Republic of Korea, $341.78 million; Taiwan $314.69 million; Thailand, $263.89 million; Qatar, $223.21 million; and Indonesia $217.55 million.

Payments for imports from the top ten sources for March 2012 amounted to $3.868 billion or 72.0 percent of the total.

IMPORTS FROM EAST ASIA WORTH $1.918 BILLION

Philippines’ total imports in March 2012 to East Asia (China, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, Mongolia, North Korea, South Korea and Taiwan) accounted for 35.7 percent of the county’s total imports with total payments of $1.918 billion or a negative annual growth of 10.3 percent from March 2011 level of $2.137 billion. Total exports to member-countries of East Asia were valued at $2.032 billion, resulting to a total trade of $3.950 billion and a balance of trade in goods (BOT-G) surplus of $114.35 million.

Imports from ASEAN member-countries in March 2012 ($1.153 billion) contributed 21.5 percent share, lower by 21.4 percent from $1.467 billion registered in March 2011. Exports to ASEAN member-countries worth $800.85 million resulted to a total trade of $1.954 billion and a trade deficit of $352.50 million.

March 2012 imports from European Union were valued at $378.50 million while exports to member-countries of European Union were worth $544.44 million. These aggregated to total trade of $922.94 million and a trade surplus of $165.94 million.

Notes:

1/ - includes China, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, Mongolia, N, Korea, S. Korea, Taiwan

2/ - includes Brunei Darusalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam

3/ - includes Alaska and Hawaii

4/ - includes Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Latvia, and UK Great Britain & N. Ireland

Technical Notes:

1. Adjustments on electronic import statistics are based on the transactions that pass through the Electronic to Mobile (E2M) of the Bureau of Customs (BOC).

2. Starting with the January 2007 Press Release, analysis and tables are based on the 2004 Philippine Standard Commodity Classification (PSCC) groupings. This is in compliance with NSCB Resolution No. 03, Series of 2005 entitled “Approving and Adopting the 2004 Philippine Standard Commodity Classification” by all concerned government agencies and instrumentalities.

 

 

(Sgd.) CARMELITA N. ERICTA
Administrator

 

Source: Foreign Trade Statistics Section
            Industry and Trade Statistics Department
            National Statistics Office
            Manila, Philippines

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