Officials say the Philippine economy grew faster than expected in the third quarter at 7.1 percent from the same period a year ago, cementing the country's chance of achieving its full-year growth target of 6 to 7 percent.

The growth has been fueled by a rise in food manufacturing and a rebound in the agricultural sector after five consecutive quarters of decline. It is faster than the 6.2 percent rise in gross domestic product in the third quarter last year, and a 7 percent expansion in the first half of 2016.

Reynaldo Cancio, a director of the National Economic Development Authority, says the growth is higher than major Asian economies that have released third-quarter data so far, including China's 6.7 percent third-quarter growth.