Yearly inflation hits 30.6% by high food prices

ISLAMABAD: The start of the new year has further jacked up the prices of essential items, as the short-term inflation measured by the Sensitive Price Index (SPI) reached 30.6% on a year-on-year basis in the week ending on January 5.

This figure has gone up from 29.3% from the previous week, statistics released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Friday show.

It also showed that inflation had increased by 1.09% on a week-on-week basis after reducing slightly by 0.09% in the previous week.

During the week under review, the prices of 23 items increased including firewood, salt powder, plain bread, onions, garlic, mutton, beef, chicken, flour, moong lentil, mash lentil, split chickpeas, irri-6 rice, yoghurt and fresh milk.

The price of chicken meat went up by 16.09%, basmati rice by 5.16%, flour by 4.87 %, bananas by 2.97 % and onions by 2.65% on a weekly basis.

The prices of nine commodities decreased during the week. They included potatoes by 4.61%, eggs by 1.31%, tomatoes by 1.17%, vegetable ghee by 0.71%, cooking oil by 0.32%, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) by 0.85%, sugar by 0.24%, and masoor lentil by 0.05%.

Meanwhile, the prices of 19 items remained unchanged during the week.

The highest increase on a year-on-year basis was witnessed in the prices of onions – 501.23% – followed by chicken meat with 82.5%.

The price of branded tea went up by 65.41% on a year-on-year basis, diesel by 60.63% and eggs by 50.51%.

Likewise, the prices of two items decreased on a year-on-year basis – chili powder by 22.98% and jaggery (gur) by 1.11%.

According to the statistics of the week under review, the inflation rate for the group with income of up to Rs17,732 per month on an annual basis was 29.60%.

Similarly, the group with income from Rs17,733 to Rs22,888 per month, the inflation rate stood at 30.06%.

For the group having income from Rs22,889 to Rs29,517 per month, the inflation came to 31.88%.

For those having an income from Rs29,518 to Rs44,175 rupees per month, the inflation rate was 32.92%.

The rate of inflation has been 30.59% for the group having monthly income of more than Rs44,176.

The inflation rate had bounced back to 24.5% in December last year because of a massive spike in prices of food products.

The prices of a majority of consumer goods remained out of the reach of people, and the major surge was in rural areas where income levels were already low.

The surge might force the consumers to change their expenditure patterns to spare more money to buy essential foods.


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