Philippine inflation rate reducing to 6.6%


Philippine Statistics Authority

Year-on-year inflation in the Philippines slowed further to 6.6 percent in April from 7.6 percent in March due to lower food and transport costs, authorities said on Friday.

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said that the latest inflation rate brings the average rate in the first four months this year down to 7.9 percent, reports Xinhua news agency reported.

inflation rate
lower April inflation rate

“The food basket substantially contributed to the lower inflation rate in April,” PSA head Dennis Mapa told a news conference.

The inflation rate of food and non-alcoholic beverages decreased to 7.9 percent from 9.3 percent in March, the main contributor to the lower April inflation rate, while transport came second top contributor, with an inflation rate of 2.6 percent from 5.3 percent in the previous month.

Meanwhile, Mapa said the core inflation, excluding selected food and energy items in the headline inflation, slightly slowed to 7.9 percent in April from 8 percent in March.

National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Arsenio Balisacan expressed optimism that the downward trend of the inflation rate “will continue and settle further within the government’s outlook”.

Last month, the government’s inter-agency Development Budget Coordinating Committee revised its 2023 inflation outlook to 5 to 7 percent from the previous assumption of 2.5 to 4.5 percent, given persisting high prices of food, energy, and transport costs.

Balisacan said the NEDA “recognizes the risks to the inflation outlook to remain tilted toward the upside amid potential transport fare increases, wage adjustments, and domestic food supply pressures amidst the threat of El Nino and the resurgence of African swine fever”.

On Tuesday, the Philippine weather bureau raised the El Nino Alert status as it expects the weather phenomenon to emerge from June to August this year and may persist until the first quarter of 2024, warning of below-normal rainfall conditions, dry spells, and droughts.

The Manila-based Asian Development Bank (ADB) forecasts inflation in the Philippines to average 6.2 percent in 2023 before easing to 4 percent in 2024.

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