DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 5 July) – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) posted the highest inflation rate in the country at 7.7 percent in June 2018, even higher compared to the 6 percent recorded in May, data released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed.
The ARMM – consisting of the provinces of Basilan, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi – surpassed the national average, which grew by 5.2 percent. Central Luzon was the lowest at 3 percent.
It can be recalled that the lone Islamic City of Marawi in Lanao del Sur was destroyed by the five-month armed encounters between government forces and Islamic State-inspired terrorists that started on May 23, 2017.
This prompted President Rodrigo R. Duterte to declare martial law in Mindanao.
The PSA reported that the country’s higher inflation rate last month, which increased from 4.6 percent in May 2018 and 2.5 percent in June 2017, “was primarily brought about by higher annual rate posted in the heavily-weighted food and non-alcoholic beverages index at 6.1 percent.”
Faster annual increments were also registered in the indices of alcoholic beverages and tobacco (20.8 percent); housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuels (4.6 percent); furnishing, household equipment and routine maintenance of the house (3.0 percent); transport (7.1 percent); communication (0.4 percent); and education (4.0 percent).
The other commodity groups had slower annual gains except for clothing and footwear index whose rate remained at 2.2 percent.
The country’s food index went up by 5.8 percent in June 2018 from 5.5 percent in the previous month and 3.1 percent in June 2017.
Higher annual mark-ups were observed in the indices of rice (4.7 percent); corn (14.1 percent); other cereals, flour, cereal preparation, bread, pasta and other bakery products (2.4 percent); meat (5.0 percent); vegetables (8.6 percent); sugar, jam, honey, chocolate and confectionery (3.9 percent); and food products not elsewhere classified (3.1 percent).
In the National Capital Region, the inflation rate accelerated by 5.8 percent in June 2018 from 4.9 percent in May and 3.1 percent in June 2017; areas outside NCR grew by 5.1 percent from 4.6 percent in May 2018 and in June 2017, 2.3 percent. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)