The country’s gross international reserves (GIR) reached a new all-time high of US$20.844 billion, up by 1.2 percent from the end-February 2006 level of US$20.586 billion. The current GIR level was adequate to cover about 4.3 months of imports of goods and payments of services and income. This level was also equivalent to 3.3 times the country’s short-term debt based on original maturity and 1.8 times based on residual maturity. 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.
The higher GIR level was attributed mainly to the deposit by the National Government (NG) of its loan proceeds, as well as the Bangko Sentral’s foreign exchange operations and income from investments abroad. These inflows were, however, partly offset by payments of maturing foreign exchange obligations of the NG and the BSP.
Net international reserves (NIR), including revaluation of reserve assets and reserve-related liabilities, increased to US$20.221 billion, higher by 1.4 percent from the end-February 2006 level of US$19.938 billion. NIR is computed as the difference between the BSP’s GIR and its total short-term liabilities and use of Fund credits.