MANILA -- Senator Sherwin Gatchalian on Tuesday welcomed the decline of the country's January inflation rate as a "positive development."
The country's headline inflation clocked in at 4.4 percent in January 2019, slower than the 5.1 percent rate in December but faster compared to the 4.0 percent recorded in January last year.
"It is definitely a positive development that the inflation rate in January was actually lower than the analysts’ median forecast and our own forecast of 4.5 percent, despite the implementation of the second tranche of excise tax on fuel last month," Gatchalian, chair of the Senate committee on economic affairs, said in a statement.
Gatchalian attributed the inflation rate decline to the drop in oil prices in the global market, which translated to lower food prices.
He also noted that a stronger peso contributed to the inflation slowdown.
"And although we expect the inflation rate to continue to go down, we hope the government will be able to fully implement its social mitigating measures this year, including the Unconditional Cash Transfer Program and the Pantawid Pasada Program, to help those who were affected by high inflation last year recover," Gatchalian said. (PNA)