The Philippine economy posted a surprising 7.8 percent growth in the first quarter of 2013, the best performance since President Benigno Aquino took office in 2010, officials said on Thursday.
The outcome was a sharp increase from the 6.5 percent in the same period last year and was attributed to healthy growth in the services, industrial and agriculture sectors, the statistics board said.
"Business confidence and optimism fuelled this growth," said Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan.
"We may now be moving along a new growth trajectory," he added.
The first quarter figure was also an improvement over the revised economic growth figure of 7.1 percent posted in the last quarter of 2012, he said.
Balisacan said the outcome exceeded both market forecasts and his own estimates.