Budget chief sees 7% economic growth in Q4 2018

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 16) — Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno on Wednesday said the economy could have grown by 7 percent in October to December last year, resulting in a full-year growth within the lower end of the revised target.

Diokno said the Duterte administration has achieved average growth, measured in terms of gross domestic product (GDP), better than previous administrations.

The Budget Department said the lower end of the revised GDP target of 6.5 to 6.9 percent, and the actual 6.7 GDP in 2017 have an average of 6.6 percent.

This is ten percentage points more than the average GDP during the term of the late former President Corazon Aquino.

"The country's growth is domestic driven as we invest heavily in our infrastructure through the 'Build, Build, Build,' program," Diokno said in a media briefing Wednesday.

The GDP target was revised from 7-8 percent to 6.5-6.9 percent.

The Philippine Statistics Authority will announce the fourth quarter growth data on January 24. Growth has slowed in 2018 from 6.8 percent in the first quarter, 6.2 percent in the second quarter, to 6.1 percent in the third quarter, or an average of 6.3 percent. The economy needs to grow by 7 percent in the fourth quarter to reach the lower end of the revised target.