© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Cranes are pictured during a rainy day at a construction site in Taipei, Taiwan, November 26, 2021. REUTERS/Annabelle Chih
TAIPEI (Reuters) -Taiwan’s economy grew much faster than expected in the third quarter and at its fastest pace since the last three months of 2021, boosted by a resumption in domestic demand following the easing of COVID-19 curbs even as exports slowed.
For the July-September period, annual gross domestic product(GDP) grew by 4.1% from the same period a year earlier, compared with 3.05% for the previous quarter, preliminary data from the statistics agency showed on Friday.
That was well above an increase of 3.2% forecast in a Reuters poll, and the fastest pace since logging a 5.32% expansion in the fourth quarter of last year.
Compared with the previous quarter, the economy expanded 6.63% on a seasonally adjusted annual rate.
The statistics office said there was a “significant return” of consumer spending in the third quarter, as the government relaxed controls to stop the spread of COVID-19, though off a low base given tight curbs at the same time last year.
Total third-quarter exports rose only 3.38% from a year earlier in U.S. dollar terms, the agency said, impacted by high global inflation, COVID-19 lockdowns in Taiwan’s largest export market China and generally weaker global demand.
Taiwan will release revised GDP figures on Nov. 29, including full-year growth forecasts for 2022. In August, the statistics agency revised down its full year outlook to 3.76% from a previous forecast of 3.91%.