The government’s total outstanding debt declined to P13.42 trillion as of end-December 2022 from P13.644 trillion in November, thanks to the appreciation of the peso against the US dollar, the Bureau of the Treasury said Thursday.
Data showed the peso appreciated to 55.815 against the greenback in December from P56.598 in November.
“For December, the NG’s [national government’s] total outstanding debt decreased by P225.31 billion or 1.7 percent from the end-November 2022 level primarily due to the effect of local currency appreciation and the net redemption of domestic government securities,” the Treasury said in a statement.
Full-year national government debt grew by P1.69 trillion or 14.4 percent.
The debt-to-GDP ratio was registered at 60.9 percent in the fourth quarter of 2022, improving from 63.7 percent in the third quarter and lower than the 61.8-percent target presented in the medium-term fiscal framework.
“This reflects the consistent drive to bolster debt sustainability through prudent cash and debt management backed by resurgent economic growth,” the Treasury said.
The government’s domestic debt amounted to P9.21 trillion as of end-December, P219.58 billion or 2.3 percent lower than the end-November 2022 level. This was due to the net redemption of government securities amounting to P217.95 billion.
The peso’s appreciation against the US dollar trimmed P1.63 billion from the peso value of foreign currency denominated domestic debt. Domestic debt comprises 68.62 percent of the total debt stock. From the end-December 2021 level, domestic debt has increased by P1.04 trillion or 12.7 percent.
External debt by the government amounted to P4.21 trillion, P5.73 billion or 0.1 percent lower than the end-November 2022 level because of the P58.34-billion impact of currency adjustments on foreign currency debt valuation.
“This offset the net impact of third-currency fluctuations against the US dollar amounting to P34.07 billion and the P18.54 billion net availment of foreign loans. However, NG external debt has increased by P652.34 billion or 18.3 percent since the beginning of the year. NG external debt comprised 31.38 percent of the total debt portfolio,” the Treasury said.