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PHL economy to grow 7-8% starting 2018 —NEDA chief

ASEAN Convention Center, Clark Freeport Zone — The Philippine economy is expected to grow at a faster pace of 7 to 8 percent, the country’s top economist said Friday.

Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said the Philippines will accelerate beyond the average gross domestic product growth of 6.8 percent in the first two years of the Duterte administration.

“The succeeding years, starting this year, we aim to raise this economic growth performance to between 7 to 8 percent ...  this is Goldilocks period of the Philippine economy,” Pernia said.

A Goldilocks Economy an economy that is operating in an optimal state by providing full employment and economic stability, according to Investopedia.

“I think that is achievable given that this year we will see the frenetic activity, ground breaking of several major projects in the provinces,” he said.

Economic growth can be sustained through tax reforms, improving the ease of doing business, cutting red tape, and lifting restrictions on foreign investment.

The Philippines expects growth to surpass the respectively forecasts of the World Bank and Asian Development Bank of 6.7 percent and 6.8 percent.

“Over recent years, economic growth has swung sharply upwards. We also note the rising contribution of investment, public sector capital spending and resurgence of manufacturing,” Pernia said.

Citing data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Pernia said foreign direct investment in January reached $1 billion, the bulk of which was infused in manufacturing.

Foreign direct investment may reach $12 billion this year against $10 billion last year, he said.

The Cabinet official also emphasized the need to look for other export markets and to lift quantitative restrictions on rice. —VDS, GMA News