Sept dollar flows swing back to deficit
More dollars flowed out of the Philippines than entered it last month as the national government’s repayment of maturing foreign debt outweighed the economy’s earnings from overseas, according to the central bank.
In a statement, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said the country’s overall balance of payments position posted a deficit of $412 million in September 2021, marking a reversal from the $2.1-billion surplus a year ago.
“The deficit in September 2021 reflected outflows arising mainly from the debt service payment of the national government’s foreign currency debt obligations,” the BSP said.
The balance of payments account represents the net amount of dollars that flowed into or out of the economy during a particular period vis-a-vis the rest of the world due to, among others, trade in goods, services and flows of capital. A surplus means a country made more than it spent for that period, while a deficit means the opposite.
From January to September 2021, the cumulative balance of payments position registered a deficit of $665 million, a reversal of the $6.88-billion surplus in the same period a year ago.
“This cumulative balance of payments deficit was partly attributed to a wider merchandise trade deficit and lower net foreign borrowings by the government compared to the same period last year,” it said.
The Philippine Statistics Authority earlier reported that the trade gap for January-August 2021 hit $25.25 billion, up from the deficit of $15.69 a year ago. INQ
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