IHS Markit reported on Monday, May 3, that the manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) of the Philippines contracted to 49 in April from 52.2 in March.
“The headline index dropped below the 50.0 neutral value after three successive months of growth,” IHS Markit said in its report.
The American-British think tank mentioned that the Philippines experienced a resurgence of 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) cases that led to tighter lockdown restrictions in order to control the spread of the respiratory illness.
IHS Markit said that many businesses suspended their operations and demand faltered for the first since 2020 due to the tightening lockdown measures in the Philippines.
“April survey data revealed a setback for the Filipino economy, with operating conditions falling back into contraction territory after only one full quarter of growth,” said Shreeya Patel, an economist at IHS Markit.
“Tightening restrictions led to another round of factory and business closures, with output particularly hard-hit. Meanwhile, labour force cuts extended into the second quarter of 2021,” Patel added.
The Philippine government placed Metro Manila, Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, and Cavite under enhanced community quarantine from March 29 until April 11 due to the recent surge of COVID-19 cases.
The government eased the status of the National Capital Region and the four provinces, dubbed as NCR Plus, to modified enhanced community quarantine on April 12.