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Despite inflation, the government will assure food security and reduce transportation expenses.

According to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), the government is dedicated to maintaining food security and affordability, as well as lowering transport and logistics costs to stop the rise in inflation and defend Filipino consumers.

According to data released by the Philippine Statistics Authority on Friday, the country’s inflation rate for July 2022 increased to 6.4 percent, exceeding the anticipated range of 5.6 to 6.4 percent set by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

“In our short-term socioeconomic plan, we aim to make sure that every Filipino has access to enough and wholesome food. Additionally, we are assisting in lowering the costs of transportation, logistics, and energy, especially for our most vulnerable populations. Arsenio Balisacan, secretary of socioeconomic planning, said, “It is our immediate priority to reduce pricing pressures and protect the public’s purchasing power through the execution of initiatives that would help Filipinos cope with the effects of increased inflation rate.

The second tranche of the Targeted Cash Transfer Program, totaling PHP4.1 billion, has been approved by the Department of Budget Management. This will lessen the impact of the price increase on almost four million Filipino households, who are among the poorest in the nation.

In the meantime, broad-based acceleration across commodity groups, particularly on food and non-alcoholic drinks at 6.9 percent, was what drove inflation in July 2022. This is a result of the meat, fish, rice, corn, and fruit prices rising more quickly.

The government will continue to support the agricultural industry by lowering input costs, creating innovative farming technology, increasing financial aid to farmers, and enhancing the agricultural value chain in order to increase local food production. The government’s flagship PHP24 billion initiative on food security, Plant, Plant, Plant Program 2, which offers subsidies and support to the agricultural sector, can help achieve these goals, according to Balisacan.

One of the primary causes of inflation, the transport sector’s inflation rate rose to 18.1% in July 2022. The statewide provisional rise in public utility jeepney (PUJ) fares was the main cause of this.

As a result, the government would expedite the delivery of the second tranche of subsidies for PUJ drivers and operators because oil prices are still high.

In addition, the government will speed up the ongoing Libreng Sakay Programs of the Department of Transportation and the Office of the Vice President, as well as the approved Metro Rail Transit Line 3, Light Rail Transit Line 2, and PNR “Libreng Sakay” for students of the Office of the President.

In addition, more than 158,000 qualified farmers and fishermen will get PHP 3,000 in fuel discounts as a way to lessen the burden of rising fuel prices.

The number of beneficiary accounts created nationwide as of July 20, 2022, was 109,073. Out of all the accounts, 65,837 had fuel discounts loaded totaling PHP207.4 million.

“We have begun the preparations for the Philippine Development Plan 2023–2028 and are conscious of the 8-point socioeconomic strategy that involves enhancing agricultural and industry productivity and creating resilience against external shocks,” Balisacan added.

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