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Medalla steps in to top job at Philippine central bank

The top ranks of Philippine finance are shuffling after the election of Bongbong Marcos as president. Felipe Medalla takes the reins at Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, where he faces a challenge in fostering economic recovery while keeping inflation from getting out of hand.

Felipe Medalla, governor of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas

The change of power in the Philippines has been accompanied by a changing of the guard in the financial ranks. Benjamin Diokno, the former governor of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), the Philippine central bank, is now secretary of finance. Felipe Medalla is his replacement.

Medalla is an economist, ex-officio chairman of the Anti-Money Laundering Council and a former director-general of the National Economic and Development Authority under the Joseph Estrada administration. He spoke with media, including Euromoney, during a briefing from Manila at the end of June.

“The most important thing to me is that BSP is an inflation-targeting central bank, and it will remain a very credible inflation-targeting bank,” says Medalla. This is the first thing, he says, and a natural place to start: it is hard to recall a time in the past 20 years when inflation has been so much the dominant theme of the central-banking environment worldwide.

We want to put the government in a position to outgrow the debt
Felipe Medalla, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas

Like more or less everyone else in his position around the world, Medalla has a challenge to deal with.

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