Philippine’s economy grew 6.6 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2017, slightly below market expectations, while the annual gross domestic product (GDP) grew 6.7 per cent.
The Philippine central bank said on Tuesday that robust economic growth in the fourth quarter gives it ample room to meet its inflation target of 2-4 per cent.
Ernesto Pernia, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary, said on Tuesday that the performance of the economy "remains on target," hitting a solid growth rate in the last quarter.
"This stable performance brings our full-year growth in 2017 to 6.7 per cent - a strong finish that keeps our position as one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia," Pernia said.
He said that public spending was the main driver of the growth which was very much in line with the government's commitment to timely delivery of public services and social protection programmes.
On the expenditure side, Pernia said external demand improved with growth in exports of goods bouncing back to 20.2 per cent in the fourth quarter from 17.2 per cent in the third quarter.
According to the data, domestic demand growth also strengthened to 7.3 per cent in the fourth quarter in 2017 from 6.4 per cent in the third quarter.
The agriculture recorded 2.4 per cent growth in the Q4, having recovered from the decline of -1.3 per cent in the same period last year, reports Xinhua.
The South Asian country moves forward in 2018 with even stronger determination to accelerate growth to hit the target range of 7 to 8 per cent, he said.
Philippine Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez, said he expects the economy "to expand faster this year now that the Duterte administration's programmes to modernise public infrastructure and sustain the growth momentum have started falling into place."