PHL foreign reserves slip to USD81.13 B last month

MANILA- Philippine Gross International Reserves (GIR) reached USD 81.13 billion at the end of February this year, slightly lower than month-ago's USD81.38 billion and year-ago's USD81.88 billion, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas' (BSP) data released Tuesday show.

It was, however, higher than the end-2016's USD80.7 billion.

In a statement, BSP Governor Amando M. Tetangco Jr. said the drop in the country's GIR level last February was countered by the net foreign currency deposits by the national government, which it got from the proceeds of the new money component of the global bond sale last January.

The Duterte administration issued a total of USD2- billion worth of US dollar-denominated global bond in the first month this year, USD500 million of which was new money component and proceeds of of which would finance its programs.

Tetangco said revaluation adjustments on the central bank's gold holdings, in line with the increase of prices of gold in the international market, also lessened the decline in the country's GIR.

He added that amid the drop in the foreign currency reserves, the current GIR level was enough to cover 9.2 months' worth of import of goods and payments of services and primary income.

Net International Reserves (NIR), which is the difference between the GIR and the total short-term liabilities, also went down and ended at USD81.13 as of last February, BSP data showed.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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