Malacañang said on Monday “the worst is over” and the country’s economy has started to recover despite its 11.5% contraction in the third quarter.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a press briefing the slump has started to ease after the gross domestic product (GDP) recorded an -11.5% growth in the third quarter from -16.9% in the second quarter.
He said the economy has started to improve after the pandemic-related lockdowns were eased. “So our economy has slightly improved. It proves the worst is over,” he added.
Roque said the figure was expected as a result of reverting to a stricter modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) in Metro Manila and Region 4-A (Calabarzon) last August.
He pointed out that while the Covid-19 threat still exists, the country is now more knowledgeable about ways to mitigate its spread. “Covid still exists, but we know how to avoid contracting Covid. We really need to reopen the economy, but we also need to wear masks, wash hands, and observe physical distancing),” he stressed.
The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) earlier said the country’s GDP slide eased from July to September from a contraction of 16.9 percent in the second quarter.
Acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick earlier said easing the country’s GDP slump “indicates that the economy is on the mend.” He expressed optimism the economy will grow further in the fourth quarter.