Philippines: Prices of construction materials climb at fastest pace in 13 years

MANILA, Philippines — Retail prices of building materials in the National Capital Region (NCR) continued to pick up in May, posting the fastest annual growth rate in more than 13 years, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

Data from the PSA showed the Construction Materials Retail Price Index (CMRPI) in NCR went up by 6.2 percent year-on-year in May, higher than the 6.1 percent in April.

“This was the highest annual increment of the index since January 2009,” PSA said.

In January 2009, NCR’s CMRPI posted an annual growth rate of 5.6 percent.

In May last year, the NCR’s CMRPI had a lower annual hike of 1.2 percent.

PSA attributed the higher annual growth rate seen in May to the annual increases in four out of seven commodity groups.

In particular, tinsmithry materials rose by 8.3 percent in May from 8.1 percent in April.

Other commodity groups with higher annual increases were painting materials and related compounds, which went up 4.1 percent in May from 3.7 percent in April; masonry materials (up 3.9 percent from 3.3 percent), and carpentry materials (up 2.1 percent from 1.5 percent).

Meanwhile, retail prices of miscellaneous construction materials eased to 10.2 percent in May from 10.6 percent in April.

Electrical materials and plumbing materials retained their April growth rates of four percent and 7.9 percent, respectively, in May.

For the January to May period, the average CMRPI in NCR was at 4.7 percent.

CMRPI, which is a variant of the General Retail Price Index, measures the changes in average retail prices of construction materials.