Debt payments double to P1T

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    The national government’s debt payments surged in the first 10 months of the year to P1.16 trillion, an increase of 99.15 percent from its year ago level, data released by the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) showed.

    Data posted on the BTr’s website showed the amount settled is significantly higher than the P583.42 billion paid out in the same period in 2019.

    Principal payments rose by 207.43 percent, to P826.86 billion from the P268.96 billion paid out in the same period a year ago.

    Of the said amount, P300 billion was for “advances to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).”

    At the onset of the lockdown measures imposed last March to combat the coronavirus pandemic, the BSP lent P300 billion to the national government under a repurchase agreement “with a maximum repayment period of six months.”

    The BTr has fully settled the amount on September 29.

    Considered as the lender of last resort, the BSP may make direct provisional advances with or without interest to the national government to finance expenditures authorized in its annual appropriation, pursuant to Section 89 of Republic Act No. 7653 or the New Central Bank Act.

    Of the total amortization made during the period, P698.89 billion was used to pay local lenders while P127.98 billion was spent to settle foreign obligations.

    Meanwhile, interest payments as of October totaled to P335.04 billion, 6.52 percent higher than the P314.54 billion paid out as of the same period last year.

    Of the amount, P239.5 billion was paid to domestic creditors while P95.54 billion was for international debt.