The country’s gross international reserves (GIR) rose to US$36.5 billion as of end-March 2008. This was more than US$200 million higher than reserves level in the previous month. Behind this development were the Bangko Sentral’s (BSP) net foreign exchange (FX) operations and income from investments abroad. These inflows were partly offset, however, by payments of maturing foreign exchange obligations of the National Government and the BSP.
The current GIR level could adequately cover 6.2 months of imports of goods and payments of services and income. It was also equivalent to 5.2 times the country’s short-term external debt based on original maturity and 3.2 times based on residual maturity. 1
The level of net international reserves (NIR) as of end-March 2008, including revaluation of reserve assets and reserve-related liabilities, stood at US$36.5 billion from US$36.3 billion at end-February 2008. NIR refers to the difference between the BSP’s GIR and total short-term liabilities.
1 Short-term debt based on residual maturity refers to outstanding external debt with original maturity of one year or less, plus principal payments on medium- and long-term loans of the public and private sectors falling due within the next 12 months.