As one of the fastest developing countries in the Southeast Asia region, the Philippines’ economic growth is heavily influenced by international trade. Importation is an essential component of the Philippine economy, aiding trade, industrialization, and consumer demand.

In 2022, the Philippines imported goods valued at US$145.9 billion from different countries worldwide. This spending confirms a 26.7% rise from $115.1 billion in 2018 and the same percentage increase in comparison to the $124.4 billion acquisition in 2021.

Top 10 Philippines Imports

1. Electronic products 

Dubbed as the “social media capital of the world”, the Philippines holds the record of exceptionally high average usage time of around three hours per day. Filipinos undoubtedly love electronics US$32.5 billion (22.3% of total imports) worth of electronic products were imported to the country in 2022. Neighbouring Asian countries such as China, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan mainly supply electronics to the Philippines.

2. Industrial machinery

The Philippines houses many industrial businesses that rely on essential equipment, including accounting machines and other office equipment, thus, making industrial machinery the 11th most popular trade commodity for the Philippines in the international market. The majority of these machineries are bought from China, Japan, the United States, Germany and South Korea.

3. General merchandise/consumer goods

This category includes products that are sold in retail stores retail stores for personal or household use- clothing, footwear, furniture, household appliances, groceries, toiletries, and other everyday necessities. According to data in January 2022, consumer goods made up 15.2% ($1.64 billion) of the country’s total imports, placing it as the third-highest contributor overall. The country’s top 5 sources of general merchandise/consumer goods are China, United States, Japan, South Korea and Thailand.

4. Machinery including Computers

Imported machinery plays a key role in keeping various sectors of the Philippine economy afloat. It helps sustain manufacturing, construction, telecommunications, information technology, and business services. Machinery including computers accounts for $11.8 billion (8.1%) of the Philippines’ total imports in 2022. Major exporters of machinery to the Philippines include China, Japan, the United States, South Korea, Taiwan, Germany, Singapore, and Malaysia.

5. Food industry waste, animal fodder

Food industry waste refers to byproducts created during food processing. Examples are vegetable trimmings, fruit peels, and animal parts that are not meant for human consumption. Animal fodder, on the other hand, is grains, protein sources, vitamins, and minerals used to feed livestock and poultry. In 2022, approximately $2.8 billion (1.9%) worth of food industry waste and animal fodder was imported to the Philippines.  The country gets most of its supply from the United States, Australia, Canada, Brazil and Argentina.

6. Construction materials (iron and steel)  

The demand for construction materials in the Philippines is growing secondary to population growth, urbanization, government infrastructure projects, and real estate development. About $5.2 billion (3.6%) worth of iron and steel was recorded to have been imported to the Philippines in 2022. Dominating the imports are China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, the United States, and European countries such as Germany and Italy.

7. Vehicles

The Philippines imports different types of vehicles such as passenger cars, commercial vehicles (e.g. trucks and buses), motorcycles, and specialty vehicles (e.g. agricultural machinery and construction equipment). Around $8.8 billion (6%) worth of vehicles were acquired in 2022. Predominantly, the vehicles are purchased from Japan, South Korea, the United States, China, Thailand, and European countries such as Germany.

8. Plastics & Plastic Articles

Importation of plastics into the Philippines involves a wide array of products- raw plastic materials, plastic packaging materials, plastic finished products, and plastic machinery and equipment- that are used in the sectors of manufacturing, construction, automotive, electronics, healthcare, and consumer goods. Data shows the Philippines’ $4.6 billion (3.1%) spending on plastics in 2022. The main suppliers of these imports are China, Japan, the United States, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, and Singapore.

9. Pharmaceuticals  

Healthcare delivery, disease prevention, and treatment depend on the latest medical findings which are mostly discovered overseas. An allotted amount of $2.7 billion (1.9%) was spent on Philippines’ pharmaceuticals in 2022. Among the primary sources of these products are the United States, India, China, Japan, Germany, Switzerland, and South Korea.

10. Cereals 

Imported cereals consisting of rice, wheat, corn (maize), barley, oats, and other grains ensure food security and safeguard the dietary needs of Filipinos. Rice is a staple food in the Philippines, while wheat is the top ingredient in the production of bread, noodles, pasta, and other food products. As documented in 2022, $4.3 billion (3%) was allocated to buying cereals from countries such as Vietnam, Thailand, the United States, China, Australia, and India.


The Philippines’s economy is on the rise and investing in importation in the country is proving to be a lucrative endeavor. Head over to Connecta if you are looking for an expert to help you achieve smooth logistics and efficient transportation of your goods around the world.