April inflation to settle at 4.2 to 5.0 percent

The central bank projects April 2022 inflation to settle within the range of 4.2 percent to 5.0 percent, an official said on Friday.

“Higher electricity rates in Meralco-serviced areas, increased domestic petroleum prices, as well as higher meat and fish prices, are the primary sources of inflationary pressures during the month,” Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno said in a Viber message.

Inflation pressures will also emanate from positive base effects. These could be offset by lower prices of fruits and vegetables and the broadly stable peso.

“Looking ahead, the BSP will continue to monitor emerging price developments and possible second-round effects to help achieve its primary mandate of price stability that is conducive to balanced and sustainable economic growth of the economy,” Diokno added.

“Inflation or the consumer price index [CPI] could still pick up because of the typhoon damage [Agaton] in Southern Philippines that could temporarily lead to higher prices of food and other basic commodities, continued effects of Russia-Ukraine conflict for more than two months already, continued global economic recovery amid disruptions in some parts of the global supply chains since the pandemic started in 2020 that could also be aggravated by some lockdowns in China as well as the sanctions on Russia,” Michael Ricafort, chief economist of Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. told Daily Tribune.

He also added that Typhoon Agaton led to unusual floodings (unexpectedly record-high floods in some areas in the Visayas), landslides, and other damage to agriculture, property, and infrastructure, somewhat unexpected during the typical summer month of April 2022.

“This could lead to temporary increase in prices of food, agricultural products, and other basic necessities in areas hard hit by the typhoon especially in Southern Philippines until supplies start to normalize, thereby could add to some uptick in inflation for the month of April 2022,” Ricafort said.

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