Philippines' inflation rate slows to 2.8 per cent in January

Image from Philippine Daily Inquirer/ANN

MANILA (Xinhua): Year-on-year inflation in the Philippines further eased to 2.8 per cent in January from 3.9 per cent in December 2023, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said on Tuesday.

PSA head Dennis Mapa told a press conference that the January inflation rate is the lowest since the 2.3 per cent inflation rate was recorded in October 2020.

In January 2023, inflation rate was 8.7 per cent.

"The downtrend in the overall inflation in January 2024 was primarily brought about by the slower annual increment of food and non-alcoholic beverages at 3.5 per cent in January 2024 from 5.4 percent in the previous month," Mapa said.

Although food was the most significant contributor to the lower inflation rate in January 2024, Mapa noted that rice inflation accelerated to 22.6 percent in January from 19.6 percent in December 2023.

Mapa said core inflation, excluding selected food and energy items, decreased to 3.8 per cent in January from 4.4 percent in December last year. In January 2023, core inflation was higher at 7.4 per cent.

National Economic and Development Authority Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said the government was closely monitoring the impact of El Nino on the economy.

"With the El Nino lingering until May, we introduce stop-gap measures, as necessary, such as allowing further imports on key commodities until our supply stabilizes at prices affordable to consumers while ensuring remunerative prices for local producers," Balisacan said.

Balisacan said that the government will monitor "on-the-ground situations" about the price of rice and food supply to address food concerns amid the threat of El Nino to the country's agriculture. - XInhua

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