PHL hits record $104-B goods, services exports in 2023 

MAKATI CITY – Despite global trade challenges, Philippine exports surpassed the US$100-billion mark in 2023, an all-time high revenue for the country’s outbound trade.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said that based on the balance of payments (BOP) from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), exports of goods and services reached US$103.6 billion.

This is higher by 4.8 percent from the total exports of US$98.8 billion in 2022.

DTI Secretary Alfredo Pascual said this is the first time the Philippines breached the US$100-billion mark in export revenues.

Pascual said the strong exports last year was driven by services, especially the information technology and business process management (ITBPM) and tourism services.

Services exports rose 17.4 percent in 2023 to US$48.29 billion from US$41.12 billion in 2022.

According to the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines, ITBPM revenues last year stood at US$35.5 billion, while government data showed that travel services reached US$9.1 billion last year.

On the other hand, exports of goods last year declined by 4.1 percent to US$55.32 billion from US$57.71 billion in 2022.

The country’s top goods export alone, electronics, decreased by 3.4 percent or US$955 million in 2023 compared to its previous year.

“This decline highlights the importance of diversifying export portfolios and enhancing competitiveness in key sectors,” the DTI said.

“The path to global excellence and export growth requires shared ambition, where the government and the private sector must intensify and sustain collaborations. Our guideline is the Philippine Export Development Plan (PEDP) 2023-2028, which aims to address constraints to production, diversify and improve access to markets, and develop a strong and innovative export ecosystem,” Pascual said.

However, export revenues last year were US$23.2 billion away from the PEDP target of US$126.8 billion for 2023.

“We recognize the ongoing challenges in both the domestic and global trading environments and hope to address the binding constraints to Philippine export competitiveness as we continue to implement the PEDP for 2023 to 2028,” the DTI chief added.

He said the DTI continues to work with Philippine exporters and relevant stakeholders to address their concerns by developing programs and services that would help them thrive amid the challenges in the global trade.

“Each exporter counts, and with cooperation, we can open the door to a future in which Philippine exports have increased their mindshare in the global market, underpinned by global competitiveness and innovation,” Pascual said.