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Abaca export earnings up 27.7% to $31.51M in Q1

Dried abaca fibers. ( means BUSINESS

MANILA, Philippines -- Philippine export revenues from abaca fiber and other manufactures surged 27.7 percent in the first quarter of 2016 on the back of increased demand for abaca pulp.

The Fiber Industry Development Authority (FIDA) reported that abaca export sales reached $31.51 million in January to March from $24.67 million during the same period last year.

Demand for abaca pulp accounted for bulk or 63.1 percent of total export earnings, reaching $19.90 million, up by 44.3 percent from last year’s $13.79 million.

Revenues from raw fiber amounted to $6 million in the first quarter from $5.11 million last year; and fibercrafts at $3.43 million from $1.95 million.

However, sales of cordage declined by 41 percent to $2.05 million from $3.48 million; and fabrics by 61.4 percent to $130,293 from $337,125.

For exports of abaca pulp, biggest markets are European countries comprising 61.5 percent of total shipments.

Purchases, however, declined slightly to $3.05 million in January to March from $3.09 million last year.

Other markets are Asian countries with purchases reaching $1.23 million, and North America at $673,703.