Photo file from THEPHILBIZNEWS
In unexpected move, President Rodrigo Duterte trained his gun against his “close friend” US President Donald Trump by blaming the tariffs slapped by Trump on certain global products for the rising prices of goods in the Philippines.
Many observers did not expect this kind of reaction coming from Duterte as both have acknowledged that they are “close friends”.
Duterte who is now in Jordan said that the inflation is caused by US President Trump. He said in his speech before the Filipino community in his official visit Jordan, “Inflation is dahil ‘yan kay Trump, dahil ‘yan sa tariff.”
He added. ”I am not apologizing There is really inflation and we are trying to control it. I am asking my economic managers to find ways to mitigate the effects of soaring inflation, which hit over a nine-year high rate of 6.4 percent in August.”
The President made the statement after the US imposed tariffs on several Chinese goods because of the alleged intellectual property violations of China, a major trading partner of the Philippines and Duterte’s favorite and preferred ally. However, the President did not explain how the US trade policy would be affected Philippine prices. For his economic managers, they attributed the record-high inflation in August due to higher electricity, gas, fuels, fish, rice, personal transport, vegetables, and meat prices.
Many people blame the TRAIN (The Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law which imposed higher taxes on oil products and beverages that resulted to the skyrocketing commodity prices. However, Duterte’s economic managers have been claiming TRAIN has little effect on inflation, attributing it instead to price higher global oil prices.
Even Malacañang through its Spokesman Harry Roque 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 (TRAIN).
As of this writing, THEPHILBIZNEWS is trying to get a reaction from the US Embassy in the Philippines regarding this remark of President Duterte, but no response has been given to us yet.