The Philippine government debt hit 5.44 trillion pesos (133.92 billion U.S. dollars) in 2012, up 9.8 percent on year on back of a sharp increase in domestic loans. The Bureau of Treasury said Wednesday that of the government\'s total debt, 64 percent was owed to domestic creditors, while the rest was owed to external creditors. The rise in the national government\'s outstanding debt was supported by the 20.7 percent hike in domestic loans. The government\'s local debt stood at 3.47 trillion pesos (85.42 billion U.S. dollars) in 2012, with government securities accounting for a bulk of the local debt. The government has been increasing the share of its local borrowings, as it continues to take advantage of low interest rates, allowing the government to borrow at a low cost as well as to avoid foreign exchange risks. Foreign debt fell by 5.3 percent to 1.97 trillion pesos (48.50 billion U.S. dollars).