Gov’t debt stock down 1.6%By Ronnel W. Domingo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The government’s debt stock as of February went down by 1.6 percent to P4.913 trillion from a month before due mainly to a net redemption of domestic securities and the strengthening of the peso.
The February debt stock was, however, 5.5 percent, or P257.4 billion, higher than the year-ago level.
Data from the Bureau of the Treasury showed that 58 percent of the debt stock, or P2.827 trillion, came from domestic lenders.
Local debt decreased by P50 billion, or 1.8 percent, from P2.877 trillion in January.
The decline was attributed to the government having redeemed more local debt paper than the volume issued.
About 42 percent of the total, or P2.086 trillion, was booked in foreign currencies such as the dollar, euro and yen.
Aside from loans extended by multilateral lenders and official aid from foreign governments, the Philippines also borrows overseas through the issuance of bonds denominated in foreign currencies.
Foreign borrowings in February decreased by P30 billion, or 1.4 percent, from the P2.116 trillion registered in January.
This was due mainly to the depreciation of the yen and the euro against the dollar, which shaved off P23.8 billion from the debt stock.
Also, the appreciation of the peso against the dollar helped push down total outstanding debt by P12.3 billion.
In February, government debt paper pegged in dollars amounted to P1.069 trillion in peso equivalent while yen and euro loans stood at P53.3 billion and P28.8 billion, respectively.
The government’s total contingent debt—composed mainly of sovereign guarantees—went down by P14.3 billion, or 2.5 percent, to P554.7 billion.
This was attributed mainly to net repayments as well as the depreciation of the dollar, yen and euro.
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