QRES (2nd Quarter 2013) A QUICK LOOK AT THE ECONOMY
Stable prices of commodities
More persons joined the labor force
Services sector is biggest employer
Production of palay, corn and abaca increased
Fisheries production increased
Tourist arrival increased
Employment rate decreased
Underemployment rate increased
Decline in coconut production
Total investments decreased
Mineral production decreased
Prices Inflation rate = 3.3%; CPI = 136.1 Prices of consumer items in the Bicol region were relatively stable during the second quarter. Most of the items posted a zero to less than one percent change in price index from the previous quarter. Only alcoholic beverages and tobacco; housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels; and education recorded an increase in price index higher than one percent from the first quarter. The alcoholic beverages and tobacco commodity group increased the highest among commodities from a price index of 149.13 to 160.7. Communication remained unchanged throughout the second quarter. The region's average quarterly Consumer Price Index was placed at 136.1, up by 0.63 point from last quarter's index. Inflation rate slightly increased from a 3.0 percent in April to 3.3 percent in May and 3.5 percent in June. On the average, however, inflation rate for the second quarter was unchanged from the first quarter at 3.3 percent. This was only 0.5 percentage point higher than the average inflation rate for the second quarter last year. The purchasing power of the peso dropped to 73 centavos in June but the average PPP for the quarter registered the same as the previous quarter.
2nd Qtr 2012
Ave. Consumer Price Index
Food and Non-Alcoholic
Housing, Water, Elect.,
Recreation and Culture
Restaurants and Misc.
Ave. Inflation Rate (%)
Ave. Purchasing Power of the Peso (in Pesos)
Beverages Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco
Gas and Other Fuels Furnishings, HH Eqpt. & Routine Maintenance
Goods and Services
Labor and Employment Total population 15 years old and over was estimated at 3.833 million in April. Additional persons joined the labor force as shown by an increased labor force participation rate. Labor force population includes those who are employed or unemployed and are looking for jobs. Total employed persons increased from 2.258 million in January to 2.312 million in April. However, the increase was not proportionate to the increase in the number of persons who joined the labor force. Thus, employment rate dropped to 92.2 percent in April despite the increase in the number of employed persons.
Period April 2012
Population 15 years & above (in thousands)
LF Participation Rate
By major industry group, services accounted for the biggest share of employed persons with about 1.1 million Bicolanos. The top subsectors with highest contribution are wholesale and retail trade, transportation and storage; public administration and defense, and other services. Agriculture placed second with almost 875,000 employed Bicolanos. Most of them (84 percent) are engaged in agriculture and forestry, while 16 percent of the employed are in the fishery sector. The industry sector generated the lowest employment. Most of the employed persons in the industry sector are engaged in manufacturing and construction. Underemployment rate increased to 38.5 percent in April from 35 percent in January.
Agriculture and Fishery Crops Production of palay, corn, and abaca increased in the second quarter. This is due to a favorable weather condition that prevailed during the quarter. The increase in production is also a result of the aggressive promotion of organic farming that reduced the use of harmful chemicals in local farms. In promoting organic farming, the DA regional field unit provided seeds, organic fertilizer, and farm implements to farmers. Coconut production, however, declined by 23.5 percent from 290,187 metric tons in the first quarter to 222,136 metric tons in the second quarter. This is still a result of the illegal cutting and infestation in the previous years. This led the PCA and DAR to enter into a memorandum of agreement to accelerate coconut planting and replanting in the entire region. Under the agreement, PCA will provide the planting materials, technical assistance and extension services. DAR will identify suitable lands for coconut.
I. Crops (MT) Palay Corn Coconut Abaca
23,943 290,187.3 6,509.23
II. Livestock Carabao
III. Fisheries (MT)
Livestock There was a slight increase in swine production as shown in the table above. Production data on other livestock are preliminary. Fisheries Because of a generally good weather condition during the quarter, production from commercial, municipal and aquaculture fisheries increased compared to the first quarter.
Tourism Foreign tourists continued to flock to the Bicol region in the second quarter of 2013. Almost half of them were from the United States, followed by Germany, China, Australia and France. Country of Origin
No. of Tourists
Bicol Region, particularly the Province of Albay, broke Guinness world record by forming the largest human “no smoking” sign. Wearing red, white, and black longsleeved shirts, a total of 13,892 government employees, students, and volunteers formed the “no smoking” sign on the soccer field of the Bicol University in Legazpi City (right photo). The grand celebration of Albay's Daragang Magayon Festival was held with a parade of street dancers and an army of giants called "Higantes de Albay" that amused about 300,000 spectators (photo below).
Tabaco City was hailed as “padyak capital” of the Philippines with about 3,000 pedicabs plying the streets as primary means of public transport in the city. Drivers of these pedaled vehicles were placed at the frontline of the city’s tourism industry. Initially, 30 pedicab drivers were trained under the city’s “Padyak Tour”, a tourism program that creates alternative sources of livelihood for these drivers. In Camarines Norte, the Bantayog Festival in April and the Pineapple Festival in June drew tourists to the province. Cebu Pacific Air started the Masbate-Cebu route, which boosted the island’s flourishing commerce and tourism. The Rodeo Masbateño is annual gathering of cowboys and cowgirls from around the Philippines and from other countries. In Sorsogon, the provincial government conducted a specialized training on tour guiding techniques, established the climbing protocol for the Bulusan Volcano Natural Park, and created multi-hazard contingency plans in the different tourist destinations in the province. Naga Excursions or “Naga X” was launched as the new tourism brand of 16 LGUs in Camarines Sur that formed an alliance to promote tourism in the province. Activities after the launching include media familiarization tour, tourism safety and security seminar, creation of Naga X marketing materials and Naga X sales mission in Manila.
Naga X tour packages include the following destinations: Mt. Isarog National Park, Haciendas de Naga, Consocep mountain resort, and Panicuason hot springs resort. The tourism industry in the region was negatively affected by the phreatic explosion of Mt. Mayon which caused the death of three Germans, a French tourist, and a Filipino tour guide while scaling up the volcano. Because of the incident, tourism activities were banned on the slopes of Mt. Mayon. The Department of Tourism Region 5 expressed concern over the decrease in sightings of whalesharks in Donsol, Sorsogon which caused the decline in tourist arrival. The decrease in whaleshark sighting was attributed to sea temperature rise due to climate change.
Investments There was a decline in total investments registered with the SEC in the region from P323 million in the first quarter to P90 million in the second quarter. These investments consist of paid-up capital and contributions of firms (stock and non-stock) and partnerships. Data on single proprietorship is not yet available. The decrease in total investments was due to a lower number of registered companies. The paid-up capital from stock firms decreased from P305 million in the first quarter to P64 million in the second quarter. Also, contributions from non-stock firms declined by 17 percent. Two additional partnership businesses were registered in the second quarter, resulting to an increase in contributions. In terms of the total number of firms, 142 firms were registered during the second quarter compared to 169 registered firms in the first quarter. Type of Firm
1st Qtr 2013
2nd Qtr 2013
Total no. of firms
Stock Paid-up capital Non-Stock Contribution Partnership Contribution
Mining The estimated value of mineral production (metallic and non-metallic) in the region decreased by 9.50 percent in the second quarter. Although the value of metallic mineral production in Albay increased, the value of gold and silver production in Masbate declined by 23 percent from P3 billion to P2.3 billion in the second quarter. This resulted to decrease in the value of total metallic production in the region.
There was no production of silver (by product of zinc) and perlite in Albay. This contributed to a significant decrease in the value of production of non-metallic minerals. Shale clay was not produced in the first quarter but there was an estimated value of 7,100 pesos in the second quarter.
2nd Qtr 2013
Gold (byprod of Copper)
Silver (byprod Copper)
Silver (byprod Zinc)
%Change 1st Qtr 2013
Total (Metallic Metallic)
Estimated Value (P)
Disaster Risk Management The provincial government of Albay signed a memorandum of agreement with the German Technical Cooperation to establish three early flood warning systems. Albay and Smart Communications, Inc. joined hands in adopting a disaster and emergency mobile application to be used by the Albay Public Safety and Emergency Management Office in disaster response management. Albay deployed a team to Davao Oriental and Compostela Valley to share experiences in post-disaster rehabilitation. The OCD Region 5 trained youth leaders from 27 barangays of Malilipot, Albay on disaster preparedness and recycling of plastic bottle containers for household lighting. DA-RFU 5 conducted the Regional Climate Outlook Forum to disseminate climate and agro-meteorological information to different government agencies and farmers to help them prepare and mitigate the negative impacts of climate variability. The DENR and the Development Bank of the Philippines collaborated in promoting
the development of tree plantations in the country. Personnel from the AFP, OCD, DENR, provincial government of Albay, and green media advocates led by the Philippine Network of Environmental Journalists, Inc. and Albay-Legazpi Press Association, Inc. joined hands to reforest the coastal areas of Bacacay to mitigate the impact of climatic change.
Published on Feb 12, 2014