DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 26 April) – The Davao Region achieved a milestone double-digit economic growth of 10.9 percent in 2017, the highest in the history of the region, owing to the stellar performance in the industry and service sectors.
Rosendo Aya-ay, chief specialist of the Philippines Statistics Authority (PSA) 11, said during the presentation of the 2017 Report on the Regional Economy of the Davao Region at the Apo View Hotel Davao Thursday that the region’s growth surpassed its 9.5-percent growth in 2016 and was the second fastest among the country’s 17 regions and the fastest in Mindanao.
Aya-ay said that the region’s 2017 gross regional domestic product was higher compared with the national average of 6.7 percent.
The Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), identified as a predominantly industrial region, posted the fastest growth rate at 12.1 percent while Davao, coming in second, was identified as a predominantly services-based region, he said.
The third fastest growing region was Central Luzon at 9.3 percent; Western Visayas, 8.4 percent; Soccsksargen, 8.2 percent; Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, 7.3 percent; Cagayan Valley, 7.2 percent; CALABARZON, 6.7 percent; MIMAROPA, 6.2 percent; National Capital Region, 7.4 percent; Northern Mindanao, 5.9 percent; Ilocos Region, 5.8 percent; Bicol and Central Visayas both obtained 5.1 percent; CARAGA, 4.3 percent; and Eastern Visayas, 1.8 percent.
He said the services sector accounted for the highest share in Davao’s gross regional domestic product (GRDP) with 49.6 percent; industry, 39.2 percent; and agriculture, hunting, forestry, and fishing, 11.2 percent.
Aya-ay explained that the industry grew by 19.1 percent, owing to the improving performance of construction, which accelerated to 38.2 percent in 2017 from 24 percent in 2016; manufacturing, 11.4 percent from 11.3 percent in 2016; mining and quarrying, 18.2 percent from 15.7 percent in 2016. But electricity, gas and water supply decelerated to 3.8 percent from 43.5 percent in 2016.
He said services grew by 7.3 percent in 2017, slower than the 8 percent growth in 2016 while all of its subsectors contributed positively to the region’s growth, with trade and repair of motor vehicles, motorcycles, personal and household goods, at 8.8 percent from 7.9 percent in 2016; transport, storage, and communication, 7.1 percent from 6.3 percent; financial intermediation, 6.2 percent from 10.5 percent in 2016; real estate, renting, and business activities sustained its 6.8 percent growth in 2017; public administration and defense, and 5.6 percent from 5 percent in 2016.
Agriculture, hunting, forestry, and fishing recovered last year, growing by 1.7 percent after suffering from a negative growth of 1.3 percent in 2016.
National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) 11 Director Maria Lourdes Lim said she hopes the region to continue its economic growth.
“This is the sixth consecutive year that the Davao Region surpassed our growth targets…. The economic performance for the past six years is a manifestation that Davao Region has indeed sustained the momentum towards the achievement of rapid growth,” she said.
Lim said the 2018 target is within the range of 9.2 to 10.2 percent; 2019, 9.3 to 10.3 percent; and 2020, 9.8 to 10.8 percent.
At the rate the region’s GRDP is growing, Lim said they are contemplating on raising the growth targets.
She said the region remained to be Mindanao’s top economy as it did not only generate the highest vale of economic output at P369.8 billion among the regions in Mindanao but also posted the fastest growth, followed only by Soccsksargen at 8.2 percent and Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao at 7.3 percent.
Arturo Milan, president of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc. (DCCCII), said the robust economic performance was expected as the region saw several development projects, including investments from the private sector and the government’s massive “Build Build Build” infrastructure program.
He said the road network connecting all the provinces around the city is currently being improved.
Milan said he hopes the economic momentum will continue to grow, most especially in agriculture, manufacturing, and services sectors in order to generate jobs and to strike a balance in the region’s growth. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)