PHL gov’t debt surpasses P13-trillion, US debt is over $31 trillion

By Claire Morales True, Managing Editor

MANILA/WASHINGTON — The Philippine government’s running debt hit a new record high in August as it crossed the  P13 trillion mark.

The debt increased partly due to the weakening of the local currency, according to the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr).

America’s national debt, on the other hand, climbed to over $31 trillion for the first time in the wake of high inflation, rising interest rates and growing economic uncertainty.

The nation’s total public debt outstanding closed at $31.1 trillion, according to Treasury Department data published this week.

At press time, the national government’s outstanding debt swelled to P13.021 trillion, up 1% from P12.89 trillion as of July.

Analysts said the debt means every Filipino has debt of approximately P13,000.

Meanwhile, Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno earlier said the Marcos administration is expected to borrow more than P1 trillion to plug the projected fiscal shortfall next year.

The Marcos administration is  planning to impose tax on digital transactions,, which could generate P11.7 billion next year.

The Bureau of Treasury reported that domestic debt, which comprises almost 70% of the total debt pile, stood at P8.94 trillion, 1.3% higher than the P8.83 trillion posted as of end-July.

External borrowings totaled P4.08 trillion as of end-August, up slightly by 0.6% from the end-July level of P4.05 trillion.
The US government, meanwhile, went on a borrowing spree during the Covid-19 pandemic to help shore up the nation’s economy as the deadly virus upended lives, labor markets and supply chains.

Outstanding debt has climbed nearly $8 trillion since the beginning of 2020. And it has jumped by $1 trillion in just eight months.