The Philippine economy surpassed expectations and grew 5.6 percent in the year 2022, the Philippine Statistics Authority reported on Thursday.

The gross domestic product (GDP) grew 7.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2022 for a full-year growth better than 2021’s 5.7 percent.

The top contributors to the fourth-quarter growth were: wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles (8.7 percent), financial and insurance activities (9.8 percent(, and manufacturing (4.2 percent).

In the fourth quarter of 2021, the country’s gross national income grew by 9.3 percent for a 9.9 percent full-year growth.

Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said the government’s job-creation, poverty-reduction, and anti-Covid-19 efforts caused the economic upturn.

“Our improved Covid-19 risk management and the easing of mobility restrictions have created a positive economic outlook, boosting economic activity and creating more jobs despite external headwinds,” he said.

In a statement, Malacañang credited the “good economic stewardship” of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., who took over in the second semester of 2022, for the country’s economic growth.

“President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s good economic stewardship resulted in the Philippines posting 7.6 percent full-year growth in 2022, the highest in 46 years since the country recorded 8.8 percent growth in 1976,” the Palace said in a statement. John Ezekiel J. Hirro