Taiwan GDP growth stands above 2% in 2013: DGBAS
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-01-28 11:50 AM
The Cabinet-level Directorate-General for Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) Tuesday issued a new Gross Domestic Product (GDP) estimate for 2013, which overturns the previous estimate from "below" to “above” 2 percent as a good surprise ahead of the Chinese New Year holiday.

The report shows that the fourth-quarter (Q4, October-December) GDP growth forecast of last year reaches 2.92 percent, far better than the 1.22 percent predicted in last November. The revision translates to a 2.19 percent GDP annual growth 2013, better than the previous estimate of 1.74 percent.

The DGBAS revised downward the growth forecast of GDP in 2013 several times, and late last year it gave another pessimistic outlook of a 1.74 percent economic growth as a result of the expected lower export for the fourth quarter, raising question whether the government can uphold or exceed the target of a 2 percent GDP growth for the year. Kuan Chung-ming, the minister of the then-Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) had been under fire for the disappointing numbers last year.

Looking at the breakdown of the numbers, the report shows that the continuing increase in electronic and plastic product exports along with a negative-turn-positive growth in basic metals and mechanical product exports contribute to a 1.76-percent export growth in value in Q4 (denominated in US dollars) while the real export growth hits 3.95 percent.

Consumer spending in Q4 is forecasted to jump 3.25 percent; retail sales up 4.26 percent; food and service up 2.85 percent. Private capital spending soars with the import of manufacturing facilities rising 11.75 percent (denominated in NT dollars) in the same period. In terms of tourism, aircraft passenger traffic rises 7.66 percent; Taiwan high speed rail and train passenger traffic rises 3.3 percent and 0.5 percent respectively.

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