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March sees highest inflation since 2015

The trend of rising inflation appears to continue as the Year on Year (YoY) inflation rate reached 8.6 per cent in March 2017, the highest since February 2015, data released by the Department of Census and Statistics shows.

According to the data, YoY inflation, which indicates the rise of price level during a particular month in comparison with the same month of the previous year, has been rising from December 2016. In December 2016, the YoY inflation rate was 4.2 per cent, which increased to 8.2 per cent in February.

Accordingly, the National Consumer Price Index (NCPI) which indicates the average price levels of the country had increased from 110 in March 2016 to 119.5 in March 2017.

Statistics reveals that the increase in inflation was due to the lower price levels that prevailed in March 2016 compared to the March 2017 and YoY inflation of food group reported for the month of March 2017 was 11.2 per cent while that for non food group was 6.7 per cent indicating that the food prices that prevailed in 2017 March is 11.2 per cent higher than the food prices that prevailed in 2017 March.

"On year on year basis, contribution of food commodities to inflation was 4.88 per cent in March 2017 compared to March 2016.

Contribution of non food items was 3.76 per cent.

This was mainly due to expenditure value increases in 'Health' (0.88 per cent), 'Transport' (0.64%), 'Alcoholic beverages, Tobacco and Narcotics' (0.57 per cent), 'Miscellaneous Goods and Services' (0.50 per cent), 'Communication' (0.37per cent), 'Restaurant and Hotels' (0.19 per cent), 'Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other fuels' (0.17 per cent), 'Furnishing Household equipment and Routine household maintenance' (0.15 per cent), Clothing and Footwear' (0.13 per cent) and 'Education' (0.13 per cent)," the statistics revealed.