Highlights of the Domestic Trade Statistics in the Philippines Third Quarter 2020 (Preliminary)

Reference No.: 2020-375
Release Date: 26 November 2020


1. Quantity of domestic trade dropped

The total quantity of domestic trade during the third quarter of 2020 was recorded at 2.29 million tons. This represents a decrease of -61.6 percent from the 5.98 million tons volume of domestic trade posted in the same quarter of 2019. Almost all (99.95%) of the commodities were traded through water (coastwise). On the other hand, the total quantity of commodities traded through air merely made up 0.05 percent of the total. (Figure 1 and Table 1) 

Figure 1


2. Beverages and tobacco led in quantity of domestic trade

By commodity section, beverages and tobacco topped in terms of quantity of domestic trade in the third quarter of 2020 with 0.56 million tons or a share of 24.2 percent to the total. It was followed by commodities and transactions not elsewhere classified in the Philippine Standard Commodity Classification (PSCC); and machinery and transport equipment with 0.52 million tons (22.9%) and 0.33 million tons (14.3%), respectively. (Figure 2 and Table 1)

Figure 2


3. Northern Mindanao posted the highest quantity of traded commodities

By region, Northern Mindanao still recorded the highest quantity of traded commodities of 1.14 million tons or 49.7 percent share to total in the third quarter of 2020. It was followed by Bicol Region with a quantity of 0.55 million tons (23.9%) and Eastern Visayas with 0.26 million tons (11.3%). (Figure 3 and Table 2)

Figure 3



4. Value of domestic trade declined

Domestic trade value is the outflow value which refers to the value of commodities that goes out from a specified region/province to another region/province.

The total value of domestic trade during the third quarter of 2020 amounted to PhP 91.19 billion. This indicates a contraction of -60.1 percent from the PhP 228.34 billion value of domestic trade recorded in the same period of 2019.

By mode of transport, the total value of commodities traded through water accounted for almost all (99.992%) of the total commodities that flow in the country, while the remaining were traded through air. (Figure 4 and Table 1)

Figure 4


5. Machinery and transport equipment registered the highest value of traded commodities

Machinery and transport equipment topped in terms of the value of traded commodities with PhP 32.94 billion or 36.1 percent share to the total. It was followed by manufactured goods classified chiefly by material, and food and live animals with corresponding values of PhP 28.73 billion (31.5%) and PhP 12.33 billion (13.5%), respectively. (Figure 5 and Table 1)

Figure 5


6. Northern Mindanao recorded the highest value of traded commodities

Among the regions, Northern Mindanao ranked first with a total value of traded commodities of PhP 44.64 billion or 48.9 percent share to the total in the third quarter of 2020. Eastern Visayas and Bicol Region came next with corresponding domestic trade values of PhP 24.68 billion (27.1%) and PhP 8.68 billion (9.5%), respectively. (Figure 6 and Table 2)

Figure 6


7. Northern Mindanao ranked first in terms of inflow value

Inflow refers to the total value of commodities that comes into the specified region/province from other regions/provinces.

By region, Northern Mindanao posted the highest inflow value of PhP 30.37 billion or 33.3 percent share to the total inflow value of domestic trade in the third quarter of 2020. It was followed by Central Visayas and Eastern Visayas with inflow values of PhP 18.38 billion (20.1%) and PhP 11.84 billion (13.0%), respectively. On the other hand, Caraga had the lowest inflow value (PhP 6.16 million). (Figure 7 and Table 3)

Figure 7


8. Northern Mindanao recorded the highest trade balance

The trade balance is the difference between the outflow value and inflow value; that is, outflow minus inflow. 

The top three regions with favorable (positive) trade balances in the third quarter of 2020 were the following:

a. Northern Mindanao, PhP 14.27 billion;
b. Eastern Visayas, PhP 12.83 billion; and
c. Bicol Region, PhP 4.56 billion.

On the other hand, Central Visayas had the highest unfavorable (negative) trade balance value of PhP 14.26 billion. (Figure 8 and Table 3)

Figure 8


National Statistician and Civil Registrar General






Commodity flow or domestic trade statistics is a compilation of data on commodities carried through air, rail, and water transport systems in a given country. However, in the Philippines, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) compiles domestic trade carried through air and water only.

Data on the inflow and outflow of commodities in the different regions of the country are used to construct inter-regional and inter-industry relation tables. These serve as bases in the formulation and implementation of various regional development programs like countryside development and port planning.

The 1993 Philippine Standard Commodity Classification (PSCC) Revision 2 is used to classify the commodities at the 5-digit level (item) for coastwise statistics and 3-digit level (group) for air statistics.

Scope and Coverage

Domestic trade statistics contained in this report pertains to the flow of goods through airports and seaports in the country, whether for government or private use, or commercial purposes. It covers air trade and coastwise trade.

Goods and/or commodities that are excluded in the compilation of domestic data are the following:

a. Goods transported by vessels of the Philippine Navy;
b. Fishing ports;
c. Fish and other marine products landed directly from the sea;
d. Logistic goods intended for the vessel and the crew;
e. Cadaver; and
f. Vessels not carrying any cargo/passenger, wherein the vessel master indicates "NIL CARGO/ PASSENGER" in the coasting manifest or passenger documents.

Sources of Data

The source documents for the coastwise trade statistics are the coasting manifests and coastwise passenger manifests from major ports and other active seaports listed by the Philippine Ports Authority all over the country. Air waybills, on the other hand, is the source document for air trade statistics issued by Philippine Airlines to every consignee.


All copies of documents are compiled and processed by the Provincial Statistical Offices (PSO) of PSA. The PSO submits monthly data files to the Central Office (CO) on or before the 30th day of the month.

Final data review of the data files, generation of statistical tables, and preparation of Special Releases are done at the CO, particularly in the TSD of the Economic Sector Statistics Service.


Domestic trade data files received after the set deadline of quarterly releases are all included in the Special Release which is published two months after the reference quarter.

Detailed data on domestic trade statistics are available at the TSD with telephone number (02) 8376-19-75 and email address tsd.staff@psa.gov.ph.

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