3 reps urge admin to take ‘decisive actions’ in face of rising inflation | Inquirer News

3 reps urge admin to take ‘decisive actions’ in face of rising inflation

/ 05:02 PM July 06, 2018

The Duterte administration must act decisively in the face of rising inflation, lawmakers urged on Friday.

House economic affairs committee chair and Bohol 3rd district Rep. Arthur Yap said government should take decisive actions in the face of inflation reaching 5.2 percent in June.

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“The government cannot allow people to suffer these price hikes on basic food commodities, goods and transport fares. All their gains are being eroded by high prices,” Yap said in a statement.

“No one bullet can slay this dragon so a combination of programs must immediately be rolled out,” he added.

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The lawmaker said there is a need to augment peoples’ sources of income through cash transfer programs based on community clean up drives where turning in plastic waste and garbage can be exchanged for cash or food commodities, or environmental protection or clean up drives.

“The cash transfer program cannot just be a dole out because no person is so useless as he or she cannot even pick up the garbage, protect and beautify his surroundings,” he stressed.

Instead of giving transport vouchers to millions of commuters, Yap said the government could also give fuel subsidies to licensed bus and jeepney groups which are working with government on transport modernization programs.

ACT Teachers Reps. Antonio Tinio and France Castro meanwhile slammed the Duterte administration for saying that the 5.2 percent five-year record high inflation rate is not something the Filipinos should worry about.

“The soaring high prices of basic goods and utilities due to TRAIN while salaries and wages of Filipinos remain stagnant has been the first of many hurdles endured by the Filipino people experiencing economic downfall,” Tinio said.

“Secretary Roque saying that there is money going around reflects his lack of empathy and blindness to the conditions of the ordinary Filipino struggling to make ends meat,” he added.

On Thursday, the government reported that the inflation jumped to 5.2 percent in June, due to sustained elevated prices of food and “sin” products.

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READ: Inflation hit new over 5-year high of 5.2% in June / Inflation hits 5.2%, exceeds gov’t target

In a news conference, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia claimed that while the June inflation rate was “rather unexpected,” the six-month average inflation rate of 4.3 percent remained “manageable.”

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque meanwhile claimed that the faster inflation rate was “not something to worry about.”

But Castro pointed out that wages of people remain low while prices of all basic commodities have hiked and social services provided by government remain inaccessible to the poorest families.

“We are appalled by the lack of apprehension by the Duterte administration with this record high inflation rate that has caused price hikes in basic needs and utilities that ultimately burdens the poorest families most,” Castro said.

June inflation is 0.6 percent higher than in May, which was at 4.6 percent, exceeding the government and market’s expectations. The last time the inflation was this high was is October 2011.

The Philippine Statistics Authority said that it was primarily brought about by the higher annual rate posted in heavily-weighted food and non-alcoholic beverages index at 6.1 percent.

The government is aiming to keep inflation within 2 to 4 percent from 2018-2022. However, the Development Budget Coordination Committee expects to miss the target for this year after it revised the 2018 average inflation outlook that is now between 4 to 4.5 percent. With reports from Alyssa Javier, Intern, INQUIRER.net

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TAGS: Antonio Tinio, Arthur Yap, Fare hike, France Castro, Inflation
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