MANILA, Philippines — Wholesale prices of building materials in Metro Manila continued to pick up and accelerated to their highest rate in over a decade as the economy further reopened, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said.
The latest Construction Materials Wholesale Price Index (CMWPI), which is used as a reference in the costing of government projects, accelerated to 8.3 percent in May from 6.9 percent in April.
This is the highest rate since the 8.6 percent recorded in November 2011 or in 10-and-a-half years. The index has also been picking up since March this year.
The surge in the index is still due to returning demand in construction activities, especially as Metro Manila has been under Alert Level 1 for more than a quarter now.
After the Omicron surge in February, the capital was placed under the most lenient quarantine classification and this has been the status since.
However, a pickup in demand may be tempered if the slight uptick in COVID cases in the past weeks will continue.
Of the components of the CMWPI, the index of fuels and lubricants registered the highest increase at 46.1 percent. The index has been on a double-digit hike for 15 straight months now.
Faster increments were also seen in the indexes of the following commodity groups: reinforcing and structural steel, sand and gravel, hardware, lumber, doors, jambs, and steel casements, painting works, plywood, galvanized iron sheet, tile works, glass products, and PVC pipes.
Declines, on the other hand, were recorded in concrete products and cement, electrical works, and plumbing fixtures and accessories.
Commodity groups with stable growth include asphalt and equipment rentals.
The 2012-based CMWPI covers 101 items. The market basket includes selected construction materials identified from the bills of materials provided by the Department of Public Works and Highways, National Housing Authority, and Subdivision and Housing Developers Association.
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