THE National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) ensured on Friday, November 4, 2022, the continuous provision of assistance especially to the vulnerable sector amid the continuous increase in the country’s inflation.

In a statement, Neda Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said the distribution of cash transfers as well as fuel discounts will continue in order to “alleviate the effects of the sustained increase in commodity prices as a result of global headwinds as well as the recent typhoons which damaged our domestic production and disrupted food supply.”

He also noted the importance of giving out assistance, especially following the recent calamities that affected thousands of families across the country.

The Philippine Statistics Authority earlier reported that the country’s inflation for October stood at 7.7 percent, 11 percent higher than the end-September level of 6.9 percent.

Neda said it is within the projection range for the month of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas at 7.1 to 7.9 percent.

Inflation rate refers to the increase in prices of consumer goods and services at a certain period.

The fast inflation rate in key commodity groups, particularly food and non-alcoholic beverages, which increased from 7.4 percent in September 2022 to 9.4 percent in October, caused the continued uptrend in the inflation

“This surge in prices resulted from external price pressures, like the Russia-Ukraine war and lockdowns imposed in parts of China, which disrupted global supply chains, and the lingering aftermath of recent typhoons, including Typhoon Karding that hit the country in late September,” Balisacan said.

Neda said its medium-term strategy amid the rising inflation is to invest in innovations and appropriate technologies and systems to make the economy and communities resilient as well as to improve the governance structure for managing water resources and mitigating the risks from water-induced disasters.

“It’s high time that we boost support for the agriculture sector not only in post-disaster recovery but more importantly through preemptive measures. To sustain productivity and resilience, climate-adaptive agricultural technologies should be put in place and value chains strengthened,” Balisacan said.

“In addition, one of the priority legislative measures of the President is the creation of the Department of Water Resources that will oversee the use and supply of water, and mitigate the risks of water-induced disasters,” he added. (SunStar Philippines)