TAIPEI (CNA) – Taiwan’s real gross domestic product (GDP) reached 3.11 percent year-on-year in the third quarter of the year, the highest level for 10 quarters, according to data released by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) on Tuesday.

The figure is 1.22 percentage points higher than the agency’s forecast of 1.89 percent made in August. DGBAS senior specialist Huang Wei-chieh (黃偉傑) attributed the growth to strong exports and consumption.

Based on Q3 growth and an estimated 1.8 percent GDP rise in Q4, Huang predicted that annual GDP will grow by 2.42 percent this year, up 0.31 percentage points from the 2.11 percent forecast in August.

The DGBAS data shows that on the demand side, real private final consumption grew by 1.91 percent year-on-year in Q3, mainly reflecting an increase in transport and the consumption of miscellaneous goods and services.

Real gross capital formation decreased by 7.75 percent year-on-year, a reversal from 0.17 percent growth in the previous quarter, mainly due to a decrease in machinery and equipment investment.

Meanwhile, driven by strong foreign demand, real exports of goods and services grew by 11.16 percent year-on-year. Imports also increased by 6.54 percent year-on-year, Q3 data indicates.

On the production side, the manufacturing sector grew 4.33 percent year-on-year in the third quarter, following a 3.81 percent increase in the previous quarter, mainly due to an expansion of semiconductor and machinery-and-equipment output.

The wholesale and retail trade sector and the finance and insurance sector increased by 4.41 percent year-on-year and 4.11 percent respectively, following 2.95 percent and 1.75 percent growth in the previous quarter.

By Chen Cheng-wei and Elizabeth Hsu