Philippine Marcos Appoints New Chief Financial Officer and Central Bank Director | Business and economy

The president-elect identifies rising inflation and job creation as priorities for his administration.

Philippine President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr has announced his choices for finance minister and central bank governor ahead of his inauguration next month.

Benjamin Diokno, the current governor of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), will become the next chief financial officer, Marcos said in a Facebook interview on Thursday.

Felipe Medalla, a member of the central bank’s monetary council, will succeed Diokno as central bank governor.

Marcos said his top priority will be the economy, with particular emphasis on rising inflation and job creation.

The appointments mark another step towards political continuity for Marcos, who is expected to develop many of incumbent Rodrigo Duterte’s economic policies, including a major infrastructure campaign.

Diokno, budget secretary under the Duterte administration before he was appointed central bank governor, said he was committed to carefully managing the economy.

“As finance secretary, I will strive to continue to carefully and carefully balance the need to support economic growth, on the one hand, and maintain fiscal discipline, on the other,” Diokno said in a statement. communicated.

Marcos also appointed Emmanuel Bonoan as public works secretary and Alfredo Pascual as commerce secretary.

The Philippine stock index was flat on Thursday, following Marcos’ announcements regarding his economics team.

On May 19, the BSP raised interest rates for the first time since 2018, joining peers around the world in fighting rising prices.

Marcos, a polarizing political figure due to his dictator father’s 20-year rule, inherits a rapidly growing economy, although investors have expressed concerns about the lack of a clear economic agenda.

The current government this week cut its growth target to 7-8% from the previous range of 7-9% to account for external risks after announcing 8.3% growth in the first quarter.

Analysts say the new administration will face huge debt from the current government’s pandemic borrowing, which could limit its ability to take on more debt to finance government projects or support growth.

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