THE Philippine government’s debt stood at P13.52 trillion as of the end of September 2022, the Bureau of Treasury (BOT) said on Thursday, November 3.

In a statement, the BOT attributed the P495.54 billion, or an increase of 3.9 percent from August, in national government (NG) debt to the depreciation of peso against US dollar as well as the net issuance of government securities to support the budget.

It said 31.2 percent of the total debt stock or P4.22 trillion was sourced externally while 68.8 percent or P9.30 trillion were domestic borrowings.

“At the current level, NG debt has increased by P1.79 trillion or 15.2 percent since end-December 2021,” the BOT said.

The agency said the P357.27 billion or four-percent increase from August 2022 in domestic debts was due to the net issuance of government securities amounting to P352.09 billion and the P5.18-billion impact of peso depreciation against the US dollar.

Since January 2022, the domestic debt portfolio has increased by P1.13 trillion or 13.8 percent due to “continued preference for domestic financing to mitigate the effects of currency fluctuations.”

The BOT said the external debt rose by P138.27 billion or 3.4 percent compared to the end of August level.

“The increment in the level of external debt was due to the P179.69 billion impact of local currency depreciation against the USD. This was partially offset by the P30.62 billion effect of third-currency depreciation against the USD and net repayment amounting to P10.80 billion,” it said.

“Year-to-date, NG external debt increased by P658.30 billion or 18.5 percent primarily due to local- and third-currency fluctuations that increase the peso value of foreign denominated obligations,” it added.

The bureau said the NG’s guaranteed obligations went up by P4.46 billion or 1.1 percent month-over-month to P397.22 billion as of end-September 2022 but P26.70 billion or 6.3 percent lower than the total guaranteed debt during the end of December 2021.

It said the increase was primarily due to the impact of local currency depreciation amounting to P9.27 billion, offsetting the net repayment amounting to P1.43 billion and P3.48 net depreciation effect on third currency denominated guarantees. (SunStar Philippines)