Budget officer in charge Janet Abuel speaks to the media after the 176th Development Budget Coordination Committee meeting on Thursday. MELO M. ACUÑA

The country’s economic managers have reduced their inflation assumption for 2019 to the range of 2.7 percent to 3.5 percent, citing the government’s decisive steps to stabilize the general price level.

Speaking after the 176th meeting of the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) at the Department of Finance, the officer in charge of the Department of Budget and Management, Janet Abuel, said the reduction was particularly due to the full implementation of President Rodrigo Duterte’s directives to increase food supply and the passage of the Rice Tariffication Act.

“The inflation assumption for 2020 to 2022 has been retained at 2.0 to 4.0%,” she added.

The DBCC assumption for the price of Dubai crude oil per barrel for 2019 to 2022 was also retained at between $60 to $75 per barrel.

For the dollar to peso exchange rate, the DBCC adjusted the assumption to P51 to P53 against the US dollar and calibrated at P51 to 55 for 2020 to 2022, “projecting the possible appreciation of the peso with easing inflation pressures and positive market sentiment with the recent sovereign credit rating upgrade of the Philippines.”

Assumptions in goods exports growth were pegged at 2 percent in 2019 because of slower global growth, and kept at 6 percent for 2020 to 2022.

Goods imports growth assumptions were lowered to 7 percent in 2019 and maintained at 8.0 percent for 2020 to 2022.

The service exports growth assumption was set at 9 percent for 2019 to 2022, while service imports growth was fixed at 3 percent in 2019, 4 percent in 2020 and 5 percent for 2021 and 2022. (Melo M. Acuña)