PHL foreign reserve reaches US$ 75.1B

January 6, 2012 11:03 pm 

By Joann Santiago

MANILA, Jan. 6 -– The Philippines registered a US$ 75.1-billion gross international reserves (GIR) in end-2011, higher than year-ago’s US$ 62.4 billion but short of the central bank’s US$ 76-billion goal.

Data released by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed that the country’s foreign reserves grew by US$ 12.7 billion against the end-2010 level but declined by US$ 1.07 billion against last November’s US$ 76.21 billion.

“Factors which contributed to the appreciable year-on-year increase in the reserves level included inflows from the foreign exchange operations and income from investments abroad of the BSP, bond issuance and other foreign borrowings by the National Government (NG), and revaluation gains on the BSP’s gold and foreign currency-denominated reserves,” BSP Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. said.

The central bank chief, on the other hand, cited that the country’s dollar reserves were partly countered by the “payments by the NG and the BSP for their maturing foreign exchange obligations.”

He said negative revaluation of central bank’s gold and foreign currency-denominated reserves also contributed to the month-on-month drop in GIR.

Tetangco said that expansion in the country’s GIR for 2011 was driven by the continued strong inflows from Filipinos abroad, service receipts from the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry, as well as direct and foreign portfolio investments.

He said dollar reserves as of last December was enough to cover 11.1 months worth of imports of goods and payments of services and income.

He said it was also equivalent to 10.5 times the country’s short-term foreign liabilities based on original maturity and 6.8 times based on residual maturity.

Relatively, the country’s net international reserves (NIR), which include among others the revaluation of reserve assets, increased to US$ 75.1 billion last December from year-ago’s US$ 62.4 billion.

The central bank defines NIR as the “difference between the BSP’s GIR and total short-term liabilities.” (PNA) RMA/JS/rsm

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