December inflation eased to 3.6%

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THE Philippines recorded its lowest monthly inflation rate for 2021, the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) said.

The December inflation rate eased to 3.6 percent from 4.2 percent in November 2021 primarily driven by slower food inflation, which decreased to 3.2 percent in December from 4.1 percent in the previous month.

In particular, vegetable inflation decreased by 10 percent while fish inflation also decelerated to seven percent. However, meat inflation slightly increased to 11.3 percent in December.

Non-food inflation also decreased to 3.7 percent in December from 4.1 percent in November. This was primarily driven by slower transport inflation, which fell to 6.1 percent from 8.8 percent as the decline in international crude oil prices translated to a decrease in local prices of petroleum products.

With Alert Level 3 being implemented in the National Capital Region and the neighboring provinces of Cavite, Rizal and Bulacan, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua said the government is working to increase local supply and ensure regular unloading of stocks from cold storages to temper inflation in meat and augment local supply by pork imports through increased utilization of the pork minimum access volume.

“The emergence of new variants has shown us that the Covid-19 virus is not going to go away easily. The good news is even as we temporarily impose more stringent restrictions to contain the spread of the Omicron variant, we have learned to manage the risks and live with the virus,” said Chua.

“Economic prospects in 2022 still remain promising, and we urge everyone to play their role in the recovery by getting vaccinated, availing themselves of booster shots, and strictly adhering to the minimum public health standards,” he added. (with PR)

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