THE country’s inflation accelerated to 3.3 percent in November 2020 from 2.5 percent in October, bringing the year-to-date inflation to 2.6 percent.
November 2019’s inflation stood at 1.3 percent. The year-to-date inflation remains well below the midpoint of the central bank’s full-year target of two to four percent for 2020.
“Inflation pressures in November were traced mainly to higher inflation for food items. Year-on-year inflation rates for fish, fruits and vegetables increased due to weather-related supply disruptions while the African swine fever continued to adversely affect pork supply, which led to higher price increases for meat. At the same time, inflation for alcoholic beverages and tobacco also increased in November.
By contrast, non-food inflation edged lower as year-on-year inflation rates of most major commodity groups slowed down in November compared to the previous month,” the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said.
Food inflation accelerated to 4.5 percent in November from 2.1 percent in October.
Based on the latest estimates of the Department of Agriculture as of Nov. 27, 2020, the combined amount of damage and losses to the agriculture sector brought by typhoons Ofel, Nika, Pepito, Quinta, Rolly, and Ulysses amounted to P15.3 billion. Among the regions, Bicol was the most affected, followed by Calabarzon, Cagayan Valley and Central Luzon.
“Our experience with the recent typhoons has highlighted the need for long-term engineering interventions, reforestation and coordinated flood management systems across different local government units (LGUs) and the need to intensify the distribution of climate-resilient technologies and other production support assistance to mitigate production loss in the agriculture sector,” said acting Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Karl Kendrick Chua.
Meanwhile, inflation for transport services has remained elevated in the last six months, as a result of social distancing directives and reduced passenger capacities in all modes of public transport.
Chua noted the need to revisit the country’s public transport system guidelines and for LGUs and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board to monitor and review prevailing and unwarranted fare increases in public transport as the economy gradually reopens and more public transport is allowed, while still reinforcing the “seven commandments” of safe public transportation. / PR