MANILA: The country’s overall balance of payments (BOP) position posted a surplus of USD467 million last April, a reversal of the USD270 million BOP deficit recorded in the same month last year, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) disclosed in a statement on Monday.
Inflows in April stemmed mainly from the BSP’s foreign exchange operations and income from its investments abroad, and the national government’s net foreign currency deposits.
These were partially offset, however, by the payments made by the national government for its foreign exchange obligations during the month in review.
On a cumulative basis, the BOP position for the January to April period posted a surplus of USD4.27 billion, a turnaround from the USD1.5 billion BOP deficit recorded in the first four months of 2018, the BSP further stated.
The surplus may be attributed partly to remittance inflows from overseas Filipinos and net inflows of foreign portfolio investments (net BSP-registered transactions based on custodian banks’ reports) during the first quarter of the year, and net inflows of foreign direct investments in first two months of 2019.
The reported BOP position reflected the final gross international reserves (GIR) level of USD83.88 billion as of end of April.
At this level, the GIR represents a more than ample liquidity buffer and is equivalent to 7.4 months’ worth of imports of goods and payments of services and primary income.