Philippine merchandise imports in February 2012 went up by 4.9 percent to $4.93 billion from $4.761 billion in February 2011.
The National Statistics Office (NSO) reported that aggregate imports for the first two months of 2012, inched up by 0.6 percent to $10.12 billion from $10.06 billion posted during the same period in 2011.
Accounting for 28.7 percent of the aggregate import bill, payments for electronic products in February 2012 amounted to $1.43 billion, down by 5.1 percent over last year’s $1.51 billion.
Among the major groups of electronic products, semiconductors having the biggest share of 21.3 percent decreased by 15.9 percent from $1.267 billion to $1.065 billion.
Imports of mineral fuels ranked second with 20.1 percent share and posted a negative annual growth rate of 2.8 percent from reported value of $1.034 billion in February 2011 to $1.006 billion in February 2012.
Transport equipmentwas the country’s third top import for the month with 9.1 percent share to total imports valued at $451.91 million, up by 53.9 percent from previous year level of $293.65 million.
Industrial machinery and equipmentcontributing 5.1 percent to the total import bill was the fourth top import for the month amounting to $252.13 million, up by 23.5 percent compared to last year’s $204.18 million.
Fifth in rank and with 2.9 percent share to the total imports, plastics recorded $142.66 million worth of imports, higher by 15.1 percent from its year ago level of $123.96 million.
Organic and inorganic chemicals ranked sixth, comprising 2.6 percent of the total imports registered $130.60 million worth of imports, declined by 10.2 percent from its year ago level of $145.36 million.
Other top imports were were cereals valued at $116.37 million and registered the highest annual growth rate of 81.2 percent; iron and steel amounting to $107.44 million; telecommunications equipment, $103.92 million; and pharmaceutical products, $73.70 million.