GROSS borrowings by the national government as of August settled at P2.39 trillion, slightly lower than the same period last year.

Latest data from the Bureau of the Treasury showed gross borrowings dipping by 3.3 percent from P2.47 trillion recorded a year ago as the government borrowed less from both domestic and foreign sources.

Gross domestic borrowings fell to P1.93 trillion during the eight-month period from last year’s P1.96 trillion.

Almost half of the gross domestic borrowings as of August this year or P911.86 billion was raised through Treasury Bonds. This is followed by the short-term borrowings from Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas which stood at P540 billion and Retail Treasury Bonds (RTBs) at P463.32 billion.

Likewise, the government’s gross foreign borrowings dropped by 10 percent to P458.5 billion from P509.7 billion.

Global bonds cornered the biggest share of the total, accounting for P146.17 billion, followed by Euro Bonds (P121.97 billion), and program loans (P99.69 billion).

For the month of August, the government’s gross borrowings only amounted to P117.74 billion this year, plunging by 80.79 percent from P612.91 billion in the same month in 2020.

The huge decline may be attributed to lower gross domestic borrowings which stood at P100.97 billion, an 82.7-percent dive from P584.37 billion in August 2020.

Unlike this year, the government offered Retail Treasury Bonds  (RTBs) in August last year which enabled it to borrow a total of P516.34 billion.

On the other hand, gross foreign borrowings in August this year also went down by 41.2 percent year-on-year to P16.77 billion from P28.54 billion.

The national government programmed to borrow a total of P3.1 trillion this year, most of which is expected to be raised through domestic sources.

As of end-August this year, the national government’s outstanding debt has hit a new record high of P11.64 trillion, up by more than a fifth from P9.62 trillion a year ago.

Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III earlier said the country’s debt-to-GDP ratio is projected to rise to 59.1 percent this year and peak next year at 60.8 percent—slightly above the internationally accepted threshold—before gradually tapering off to 60.7 percent and 59.7 percent in 2023 and 2024.

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