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NEDA warns fare hike might cause further spike on inflation rate

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Friday, October 19th, 2018


MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines inflation rate has skyrocketed to 6.7% in the month of September and to a staggering 6.2% mark for the 3rd quarter of 2018.

The approved fare hike on buses and public utility jeepneys is already set on the first week of November.

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) warned that the fare increase might cause a huge impact on the country’s inflation rate or a further rise in prices of basic goods and services.

NEDA however could not say just how big the impact of the fare hikes would be on the inflation.

“Anything that increases cost of service would be. We’ll have to find out what quantitative is that will be, we’ll see by how much,” said NEDA Director Secretary Ernesto Pernia.

According to Secretary Pernia, their original proposal was only a 50-centavo increase in minimum fare to the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

NEDA Undersecretary Rosemarie Edillon in her letter to the LTFRB explained that the fare hike’s “inflationary impact will, however, result in higher inflation in 2019.”

The NEDA forecasts an estimated an increase of “0.221-percentage point to the country’s annual inflation next year.”

But LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra believes otherwise and argued that the fare hike will only cause a slight impact on the country’s inflation.

“We have been calculating enough na kahit na dito sa dagdag piso na binigay natin hindi masyadong makaka-apekto duon sa inflation rate,” he said.

Amid the issue, Malacañang through Presidential Spokesperson and Presidential Legal Adviser Salvador Panelo calls on the riding public to do some belt-tightening measures because the government’s actions are limited by the uncontrollable movement of oil prices in the world market.

“Siguro we have to accept the fact na talagang masama ang panahon, so magtiis muna tayo,” Panelo concluded. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Joan Nano)

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Consumer group appeals to DTI to lower SRP of prime commodities

by Maris Federez   |   Posted on Thursday, May 9th, 2019

Price watch group, Laban Konsyumer, has filed an appeal before the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to lower the suggested retail price (SRP) of prime commodities following the easing down of the Philippines’ inflation rate.

Based on the latest report of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the country’s inflation rate has gone down to three percent in April – the lowest since January 2018.

Laban Konsyumer president Vic Dimaguiba said it is high time for the DTI to come up with a new SRP and that prices of a number of products; such as canned sardines, instant noodles, soaps, bottled water and other condiments, should have already been reduced.

“Ang amin pong panawagan eh napapanahon na para maramdaman naman ng mga consumer yang three percent inflation sa pamamagitan ng pagbaba ng presyo sa mga pangunahing bilihin [Our appeal is this. It is already high time that the consumers feel the three percent inflation thru the lowering of prices of basic commodities],” Dimaguiba added. (with details from Joan Nano) /mbmf

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3% inflation rate in April due to Duterte’s competence—Palace

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 7th, 2019

President Rodrigo Duterte | Courtesy : PCOO

Malacañang welcomes the downward movement of the country’s inflation rate and attributes it to President Rodrigo Duterte’s competence.

The Palace has lauded the 3% inflation rate last April 2019 which is the lowest rate recorded by the Philippine Statistics Authority since January 2018.

According to Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo, the low inflation rate is due to the president’s political will and his competence in managing the country’s economy.

“The current disinflation proves PRRD’s competence in managing our country’s economy while it disproves those who criticize him for over-focusing on our nation’s peace and order situation.”

“We give credit to the President’s strong political will and decisive action in addressing this national issue. We are confident that inflation would continue to ease by the end of the year especially now that President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has already signed Republic Act No. 11203,” he said.

The administration is also confident that commodity prices will continue to decline before the end of 2019.

“The Government, through the President’s economic managers, has been constantly monitoring the prices of basic goods and commodities and will not relax its efforts but will press ahead with programs designed to assist each and every Filipino with their expenses,” according to Panelo.(with reports from Rosalie Coz)

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PH inflation further eases to 3.3% in March

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Saturday, April 6th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The country’s inflation further eased in March as increases in prices of food and beverages slowed for the fifth month in a row, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported on Friday (April 5).

Latest PSA data showed that the inflation rate in March decelerated to 3.3 percent, much slower than 3.8 percent recorded in February and the lowest since January 2018 at 3.4 percent.

The PSA said the slower pace of increases in goods and services was driven by lower costs of food and non-alcoholic beverages.

Downtrend in price increases in alcoholic beverages, tobacco; housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels; furnishing, household equipment, and house routine maintenance; health, communication; and restaurant and miscellaneous goods and services were also noted by the PSA.

In a statement, Malacañang welcomed the slower inflation, promising that the slide would continue this year.

“We are confident that this slide would continue further for the rest of the year, as President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s signing of Republic Act 11203 (Rice Tariffication Law) last February is expected to further ease inflation,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said.

“Our economic managers expect rice prices to go down and even cut inflation by 0.5 percent to 0.7 percent point this year,” he added.

Panelo also assured that the government will continue to look for ways to counter possible increase in prices of basic goods due to the effects of the El Niño phenomenon in the country.

“The Government, however, would not be complacent and has been vigilant in keeping a close watch on the prices of goods and commodities with the onslaught of El Nino, which may hamper food production,” he said.

The government also calls on the public to preserve water supply, not only in agriculture but also in daily consumption, “to increase our resiliency against this extreme weather phenomenon.”

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) also echoed Malacañang’s call.

“The latest inflation outturn is consistent with the BSP’s expectations that inflation will continue to settle within the target range for 2019 and 2020. However, the possibility of a stronger and prolonged El Niño episode together with the continued rise in global crude oil prices provide upside price pressures over the near term,” the BSP said in a statement.

The PH central bank also warned that a potential slowdown in economic activity amid the delayed passage of budget could pose some risks to inflation. – Robie de Guzman (with details from Rosalie Coz)

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