‘Robust Q1 growth sign of resilience’

BANGKO Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Benjamin Diokno has framed the 8.3-percent GDP growth in the first quarter of 2022 as  “further confirmation of the Philippine economy’s resilience.” This was achieved, he said in a statement hours after the release of the first-quarter GDP data, “by a whole-of-government approach, which required bold and decisive fiscal and monetary actions to remain in sync.”

On the monetary side, according to Diokno, “the historic-low key policy rate has supported credit activities, while our time-bound regulatory and operational relief measures allowed banks to continue performing the important role of financial intermediation throughout the pandemic.”

He noted that the “robust growth performance of the economy in the first quarter” had beaten “analysts’ expectations.” This, “along with other favorable macroeconomic indicators, helps fulfill the BSP’s vision of a post-Covid Philippine economy that is stronger, more technologically advanced, more inclusive, and more sustainable.”

Moving forward, the BSP, said Diokno, “will continue to work with the national government to keep the economy on a robust growth trajectory and to address headwinds such as price pressures.”

The central bank, he added, “supports the implementation of non-monetary measures by the government to address supply-side pressures, such as boosting importation of specific food items experiencing price spikes and direct subsidies to vulnerable sectors.

“For our part, the BSP stands ready to adjust our monetary policy settings, should we see material risk of these supply-side pressures spilling over to the demand side.”