PH electronics exports to decline 10-12% this year – SEIPI
Philippine electronics exports will likely contract this year to 10-12 percent, contrary to what the sector previously thought on lackluster performance in the first three quarters as prices fell despite growing volumes of exports, but the industry is expected to modestly recover in 2014, an electronics industry group said Monday.
The Semiconductor and Electronics Industries in the Philippines (SEIPI) now forecasts that electronics exports will decline 10-12 percent this year, compared with its earlier forecast of 5-6 percent growth, Dan Lachica, president of SEIPI said.
“Volumes are growing but prices are dropping. In fact, many companies plan to operate during the holidays to meet the volumes,” Lachica said in a press briefing on the sidelines of SEIPI’s CEO Forum and 114th general membership meeting at Solaire resort Hotel on October 21.
While double digit growth is seen in the automotive and consumer electronics sectors, weakness in semiconductors, which comprise 76 percent of the industry’s exports, drove the expected contraction, SEIPI said in a statement.
Next year will be better, supported by strength of automotive and consumer electronics markets, the group said.
Lachica expects electronics, the country’s number one dollar earner, to recover in 2012 with a 5 percent growth, on the back of a continuing strength in the automotive and consumer electronics market as well as the infusion of new investments.
Lachica cited the country’s strong presence in the automotive and consumer electronics manufacturing firms for smart phones and other gadgets like desktop computers and laptops as these products continue a robust demand.
There are also some opportunities for companies relocating here from Thailand and China. Investors in China are looking for alternative sites like the Philippines because China is increasingly becoming expensive.
However, projected investment inflows have not really materialized. As of the first semester this year, investments in the first half stood at $256 million.
Electronics firm ON Semi committed to invest additional $8 million for high-end automotive electronics testing in its plant in Cavite. One major investment, which requires 30-hectare lot, is still on its planning stage. Japanese printer companies Canon, Brother and Murata are also expected to bring in 20-30 supplier investors.
“The industry is looking to other areas within the electronics industry to be able to meet its objectives to becoming a $112-billion export industry by 2030,” Lachica added.