September 28, 2023

The Cordillera’s economy grew by 8.7 percent in 2022, the second highest growth among the 17 regions in the country.

The region’s economy last year, valued at P337.7 billion, surpassed the pre-pandemic level, which was P321.7B in 2019.

Philippine Statistics Authority-Cordillera Director Villafe Alibuyog said the region’s Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP) level in 2020 stepped back by four years and it took two years for the region to get back on track and exceed the 2019 value of the economy.

Cordillera’s economy backtracked in 2020 with a value of P288.9B due to the pandemic. It grew in 2021 at P310.8B.

Of the region’s three major industries, Alibuyog said that services contributed the most to Cordillera’s economic growth last year with 7.1 percent followed by the industry that contributed 1.8 percent. Agriculture, forestry, and fishing slowed down the region’s economic growth as it posted a -0.2 percent growth.

Of the Cordillera’s P337.7B economic value, services contributed almost half, or P225.6B, while the industry sector accounted for P83.9B. Agriculture, forestry, and fishing contributed P28.1B.

The major contributor to the services sector’s P225.6B share to the regional economy is wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles, which was valued at P60.6B or 26.7 percent, while the share of financial and insurance activities is 17.7 percent; real estate ownership and dwelling, 10.4 percent; professional and business services, 8.6 percent; and education, 8.4 percent.

On the industry sector, manufacturing had the biggest share valued at P43.1B or 51.4 percent followed by construction with 30.4 percent; mining, 11.3 percent; and electricity, steam, water, and waste management; 6.9 percent.

On agriculture, forestry, and fishing sector, crops contributed the biggest share valued at P18.5B or 65.9 percent, while animals contributed a 22 percent share. Support activities to the sector contributed 9.9 percent while aquaculture contributed 0.9 percent.

The economy of all the regions in the country expanded in 2022 and nine regions recorded a growth that was faster than the 7.6 percent average national growth.

Cordillera is second to Western Visayas that recorded the fastest growth at 8.7 percent. Western Visayas’ economy grew by 9.3 percent in 2022.

National Economic Development Authority Policy Formulation and Planning Division Chief Freda Toyoken said the full reopening of the economy, coupled with implementation of policies that safeguard public health, contributed to the region’s economic growth.

Another factor that helped in the recovery of the region’s economy is the high vaccination rate, which was at 97 percent in December 2022.

She said the high vaccination rate improved the confidence of people to engage in various economic activities.

Toyoken said another factor that helped accelerate Cordillera’s economy was the regional allocation of P135.5 million that was translated to public goods and services that provided the necessary support for the production in agriculture, industry, and services sectors. – Jane B. Cadalig