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Philippine forex reserves at fresh record high in September

* Forex reserves can cover nearly one year worth of imports

* Equal to 6.5 times s-term foreign debt, residual maturity

MANILA, Oct 5 (Reuters) - The Philippine central bank on Friday released preliminary data on gross international reserves (GIR) at the end of September:

KEY DATA Sept Aug July June May Apr GIR ($ bln) 81.878 80.728 79.759 76.130 76.082 76.538

NOTE: Data is preliminary. August figure was revised.

KEY POINTS:

- The increase in the reserves level was due mainly to the central bank's foreign exchange operations, its income from overseas investments, a n d gains on revaluation of the central bank's gold holdings, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said in a statement. It a dded the inflows were partly offset by payments by the national government of its maturing foreign exchange obligations.

- Governor Amando Tetangco has said the central bank will review its yearend forecast for foreign reserves, with current levels above the official forecast of $77.5 billion to $78 billion at the end of 2012.

- The Philippine peso

is emerging Asia's best performing currency so far this year, with gains of nearly 6 percent against the dollar in 2012.

- The central bank will also review its 2012 balance of payments surplus forecast of $2.8 billion, or 1.1 percent of gross domestic product. The BOP surplus in 2011 was $10.18 billion.

- The country gets an average of more than $1.6 billion in remittances from overseas Filipinos each month, helping to support the peso, balance of payments and foreign reserves.

LINKS:

- For details, central bank website is

(Reporting by Karen Lema; Editing by Rosemarie Francisco)

((karen.lema@thomsonreuters.com)(+632 841-8938)(Reuters Messaging: karen.lema.reuters.com@reuters.net))

Keywords: PHILIPPINES ECONOMY/RESERVES