Inflation in June 2016 rose to 1.9 percent from 1.6 percent in the previous month due to increases in food and non-food prices, according to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).
This is within the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ forecast of 1.5-2.4 percent for June 2016 and the median market expectation of 1.9 percent.
“The hike in inflation can be attributed to the residual effects of the weakening El Niño and the slight recovery of oil prices,” said Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia.
“But the inflation trend in the first six months of 2016 was manageable. This is expected to continue for the rest of the year against a backdrop of expanding productive capacity of the domestic economy and persistently low oil prices,” the Cabinet official said.
Rising prices in housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuels drove inflation in the non-food group to 0.9 percent. Inflation in June also adjusted to the rise of oil prices for 2016.
“International oil prices have yet to recover, but as global demand improves alongside the pressures brought by the Canada wild fires and the political unrest in Nigeria, the biggest oil exporter in Africa, oil prices have reached its highest level in 2016,” the Cabinet official said.
Food inflation also rose by 3.0 percent in June 2016. The lingering, though waning, effects of the El Niño, caused the uptick in prices of vegetables and livestock, among other food commodities.
Rice registered a year-on-year deflation of -0.5% in June 2016 but prices picked up slightly by 0.2 percent from the previous month as El Nino-related droughts continued to negatively affect rice production.
Pernia said government should start preparing for the upcoming La Niña while farmers recover from the impact of the El Nino phenomenon.
“We should intensify monitoring.the status of flood control projects and the clearing of drains and waterways. We also need to improve the agriculture logistics chain by constructing more bridges to connect farming areas separated from markets by rivers that are non-traversable during the rainy days,” the NEDA Director-General added.