PH debt reaches new record at P12.79T

THE amount of the national government’s outstanding debt has climbed by more than P290 billion, setting a new record P12.79 trillion at the end of June this year, according to Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) data.

In a statement on Friday, the BTr ascribed the growth to “net issuances of domestic and external loans as well as currency adjustments.”

Of the total, 68.5 percent was made up of domestic debt.

The Treasury said the “net issuance of P96.30 billion in government securities and the P5.36 billion impact of local currency depreciation against the US dollar,” and resulted in a 1.2-percent increase in local debt to P8.76 trillion from P8.66 trillion.

Since the end of 2021, domestic debt has seen an uptick of P596.70 billion, or 7.3 percent.

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The bureau also noted that due to “the impact of local currency depreciation against the USD (US dollar) amounting to P186.94 billion and the net availment of external financing amounting to P43.18 billion; offsetting the P35.72 billion effect of net depreciation against the US dollar on third-currency denominated obligations,” the country’s external debt widened by 5.1 percent, to P4.02 trillion from P3.83 trillion.

The BTr said commercial loans made up 55.4 percent of all external debt, while multilateral and bilateral loans made up 34.2 and 10.5 percent of that obligation, respectively.

The exchange rate used to compute the data was P54.97 to $1, which was less favorable than the P52.41 to $1 used in May. The rate was P48.70:$1 a year ago.

At the end of June in the previous year, there was P11.16 trillion in total outstanding debt, of which P7.93 trillion sourced through domestic borrowing and P3.22 trillion from external sources.

By the end of 2021, total debt had grown to P11.73 trillion, thanks to P3.56 billion in foreign loans and P8.2 billion in domestic borrowings.

In the meantime, at the end of June this year, the amount of government-guaranteed debt rose by 3.6 percent to P413.92 billion due to net domestic guarantees of P9.34 billion and the impact of local currency depreciation against the US dollar of P10.44 billion.

“These offset the effect of third-currency fluctuations amounting to P4.60 billion and net repayments on external guarantees amounting to P0.97 billion,” the bureau said.

The outstanding debt is expected to hit P13.41 trillion this year, P4.40 trillion of which are domestic obligations and P4.01 trillion from overseas liabilities.

The debt-to-gross domestic product ratio is targeted by the Development Budget Coordination Committee to normalize from this year’s level of 61.8 percent to 61.3 percent by 2023; to 60.6 percent by 2024; 59.3 percent by 2025; 55.7 percent by 2026; and 52.5 percent by 2027.