MANILA - The country's gross international reserves fell to $80.79 billion, the lowest in 7 months, according to data released by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas on Monday.
The decline was due mainly to outflows from the central bank's foreign exchange operations and government's foreign debt payments, BSP Governor Nestor Espenilla said.
Revaluation adjustments on the BSP's gold holdings due to higher prices in the international market, net foreign currency deposits by the national government, and the central bank's income from overseas investments helped offset the decline, he said.
The central bank expects reserves this year to rise to $84.7 billion from $80.7 billion at end-2016. It also expects the current account surplus to widen to $800 million this year from a $600 million surplus in 2016.
The GIR is the sum of all foreign exchange flows in the country. It serves as buffer to ensure that the Philippines will not run out of foreign currency to pay for imports or maturing debt. -- with ABS-CBN News