MANILA, Philippines — The overall inflation rate has reached to almost four percent in January.
This has been noticeably higher from the 3.3% recorded rate in December 2017, based on the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data.
Before the implementation of Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law, a liter of diesel had an average price of P33. But now, there has been a recorded increase of P9 after the law was implemented in January.
According to economic officials, the TRAIN law is not the cause of the increase in prices of some basic commodities such as oil and meat.
“I think there was a quite an appreciable rise in the price of rice and this also has something to do with the fact that some disarray in the way our rice stocks were handled including importation and whatever buffer we had with NFA [National Food Authority],” said National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Ernesto Pernia.
The price hike, they said can also be attributed to the increase in price of Dubai crude, the peso depreciation and to natural calamities.
“The other food items where we saw accelerated inflation were meat and fish. I suppose when it comes to the meat, it also has something to do with increased prices in corn, and this was also due to typhoons, the lingering effects of the typhoons,” said NEDA Usec. Rosemarie Edilon.
“Yung DTI (Department of Trade and Industry) and DOE (Department of Energy), they have mechanisms naman for the public and inform them kung may nagsasamantala. Tapos ‘yung DTI mayroong regular price monitoring, so far wala naman silang nakikita and ‘yung mga sinabihan nila na medyo mas mataas sa SRP, nag-adjust naman sila downwards,” said Department of Finance (DOF) Usec. Karl Kendrick Chua.
(DTI and DOE have mechanisms for the public and [people may] inform them if there are abusers. DTI also has a regular price monitoring. So far they haven’t seen any [irregularities], and the ones who were called out for having prices higher than the SRP have adjusted their prices downwards.) — Mai Bermudez | UNTV News & Rescue
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