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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        19  March 2011

Philippines suffers February net outflows

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The Philippines suffered net outflows of foreign exchange in February, as it registered a balance of payments (BOP) deficit during the period.

Data released by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed that the country registered a $ 133 million deficit in its BOP last month.

"The February deficit of $133 million was due largely to payments of maturing foreign exchange obligations by the national government," BSP Governor Amando Tentangco Jr. said.

"These weren't, however, enough to reverse the trend, as the cumulative position for the first two months of 2011 was still a surplus at $1.47 billion," he said.

The end-February BOP surplus was higher than last year's $ 1.11 billion. The large BOP surplus last January was primarily on account of the national government's global peso bond sale worth $ 1.25 billion.

"We continue to expect to register a full-year BOP surplus for 2011. We still see foreign exchange inflows into emerging market economies, given our growth prospects," Tetangco said. The governor said that remittances are also expected to be resilient.

"These should provide fundamental support to the peso. Our regular review of BOP projections will be done in April," he said.


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ASEAN  ANALYSIS

This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs  
04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More

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