INCREASE in prices of food items, fuel, transport, accommodation, clothing among others pushed inflation to 15.3 percent in January 2017 against the position one year earlier according to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) report released on Wednesday by National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
The Bureau, however, explained that the figure was 0.24 percent points lower than the 15.37 percent recorded in December 2017 making it the twelfth consecutive month that headline inflation has slowed down year on year inflation since January 2017.
“The Food Index increased year-on-year by 18.92 percent in January, down from the 19.42 percent recorded in December.
“On a month-on-month basis, the Food sub-index increased by 0.87 percent in January 2018, down by 0.29 percent from 0.58 percent recorded in December.
“Average annual rate of change of the Food sub-index for the twelve-month period ending January 2018 over the previous twelve-month average was 19.62 percent, 0.07 percent points from the average annual rate of change recorded in December 2017 (19.55) percent.
“The rise in the food index was caused by increases in prices of imported food in general as well as bread and cereals, milk, cheese and eggs, vegetables, fish, coffee tea and cocoa, meat, potatoes yam and other tubers and oil and fats”, NBS reported.
Headline index increased by 0.80 percent in January 2018, 0.21 percent points higher from the rate of 0.59 percent recorded in December 2017.
The percentage change in the average composite CPI for the twelve-month period ending January 2018 over the average of the CPI for the previous twelve-month period was 16.22 percent, showing 0.28 percent point lower from 16.50 percent recorded in December 2017.
The urban inflation rate rose by 15.56 percent (year-on-year) in January 2018 from 16.78 percent recorded in December 2017, while the Rural inflation rate also eased by 14.76 percent in January 2018 from 15.02 percent in December 2017.
On the month-on-month basis, the urban index rose by 0.83 percent in January 2018, up by 0.17 from 0.66 percent recorded in December 2017, while the rural index also rose by 0.77 percent in January 2018, up by 0.23 when compared with 0.54 percent in December 2017.
The corresponding twelve-month year-on-year average percentage change for the urban index is 16.55 percent in January 2018.
This is less than 16.92 percent reported in December 2017, while the corresponding rural inflation rate in January 2018 is 15.89 percent compared to 16.10 percent recorded in December 2017.
The report added that the ”All Items Less Farm Produce” or Core sub-index, which excludes the prices of volatile agricultural in January stood at 12.10 percent, similar to rate recorded in December 2017.
“On a month-on-month basis, the Core sub-index increased by 0.68 percent in January 2018, higher from 0.51 percent recorded in December.
“Average 12-month annual rate of change of the index was 13.01 percent for the twelve-month period ending January 2018; this is 0.45 percent points lower than 13.46 percent recorded in December 2017.
“The highest increases were recorded in prices of fuel and lubricants for personal transport and transport equipment, vehicle spare parts, accommodation services, maintenance and repair of personal transport equipment, appliances articles and products for personal care, hotels and restaurants, hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishments, clothing materials and other articles of clothing, garments, nondurable household goods and solid fuels.”