MANILA – Budget secretary Benjamin Diokno on Friday said inflation rate is expected to normalize this year, citing the slower-than-expected inflation last December.
The 5.1 percent inflation rate in December 2018 was lower than the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ forecast of 5.2 to 6 percent, Diokno told GMA News.
“Inaasahan naman natin talaga na pababa na ‘yung inflation. In fact, I think ang lower bound ng forecast ng BSP is 5.2. Eh, naging 5.1. So I’m sure, they’re pleasantly surprised …” Diokno said.
The Cabinet official noted the government now expects inflation to hit between 2 to 4 percent.
“Pag tayo’y sinuswerte, baka maging 2 pa ‘yon. Mas malapit sa 2 kaysa sa 4 dahil sa tinatawag naming base effects … Kasi kinukumpara mo ‘yung inflation this year doon sa presyo last year. Eh, napakataas ng presyo last year,” he said.
Inflation may even hit 2 percent despite the P2 per liter excise tax increase on petroleum products.
Rice prices are also expected to go down.
“Alam naman natin na talagang bumaba ’yung presyo ng krudo sa world market. At saka with the tariffication, ‘yung rice tariffication, mababawasan ng at most P7.00 per kilo ang bigas …” Diokno said. (GMA News)