Duterte did not explain how the US trade policy affected Philippine prices. He made the statement after the US slapped tariffs on several Chinese goods because of the alleged intellectual prooerty violations of China, a major trading partner of the Philippines.
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Duterte: 'Inflation is because of Donald Trump'
Alexis Romero (philstar.com) - September 7, 2018 - 10:30pm

AMMAN – President Duterte on Friday blamed the tariffs slapped by United States President Donald Trump on some goods for the record-high inflation in the Philippines as the Filipino leader faces backlash back home for the rising prices of goods.

The Philippines' headline inflation hit a nine-year record high of 6.4 percent in August, faster than the 2.6 percent recorded in August 2017. It was also faster than the 5.7 percent recorded last July.

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Year-to-date inflation is now at 4.8 percent, beyond the upper-band of the government’s inflation target of 2 to 4 percent, and slightly below the central bank's revised full-year inflation forecast of 4.9 percent.

Economic managers attributed the record-high inflation in August to higher electricity, gas, fuels, fish, rice, personal transport, vegetables and meat prices.

Duterte, however, believes the US has something to do with the rising commodity prices.

“Inflation is dahil ‘yan kay Trump. When Trump raised yung mga tarrif niya, pati banned other items, nagkaloko-loko," the president said during a meeting with Filipinos here.

Duterte did not explain how the US trade policy affected Philippine prices. He made the statement after the US slapped tariffs on several Chinese goods because of the alleged intellectual property violations of China, a major trading partner of the Philippines.

Duterte said he is leaving it to his economic managers to address the impact of inflation.

"I am not apologizing. There is really inflation and we are trying to control it," he said.

Malacañang previously said the August inflation is not alarming because it was caused by a strong domestic demand and the higher disposable income made possible by the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Act.

The law exempts those earning an annual taxable income of P250,000 and below from paying the personal income tax and raised the tax exemption for 13th month pay and other bonuses to P90,000.

Incidentally, TRAIN, which imposed higher taxes on oil products and beverages, is being blamed by critics for the spiraling commodity prices.

Some groups have also accused the Duterte administration of not doing enough to help the poor and other sectors hit by upward price movements.

Officials have claimed TRAIN has little effect on inflation, attributing it instead to price higher global oil prices.

DONALD TRUMP INFLATION RODRIGO DUTERTE
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