ISLAMABAD: Inflation rate has once again recorded an increase and climbed to 3.4 percent during August over a year ago mainly due to increase in prices of food commodities.
The inflation measured through Consumer Price Index (CPI) has recorded at 3.4 percent during August as against same month of the last year, according to the latest data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) released on Tuesday. The inflation has registered increase during previous month after coming down to 20 months lowest level in July 2017. Inflation has shown increase of 0.2 percent on monthly basis. The inflation has enhanced due to increase in prices of food commodities ahead of Eidul Azha. The government has kept the inflation below the target of 6 percent for the ongoing fiscal year 2017-18.
Meanwhile, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has projected that average Consumer Price Index (CPI) will remain in the range of 4.5 percent to 5.5 percent. According to PBS, the Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI), which gauges rates of kitchen items on weekly basis, has decreased by 0.24 percent during August 2017 as against same month of the previous year. Similarly, the wholesale price index (WPI) based inflation increased by 0.84 percent in the period under review.
The break-up of inflation of 3.4 percent showed that food and non-alcoholic beverages prices have increased by 2.25 percent. Similarly, health and education charges went up by 12.47 percent and 10.85 percent, respectively. Similarly, prices of utilities (housing, water, electricity, gas and fuel) increased by 5.3 percent in last the month. Meanwhile, the prices of alcoholic beverages and tobacco went down by 16.19 percent. Price of clothing and footwear increased by 3.93 percent and furnishing and household equipment maintenance charges 2.58 percent. Recreational charges and those related to culture went up by 0.29 percent in the period under review, while amounts charged by restaurants and hotels by 4.77 percent in August 2017 as compared to the same month last year.
In food commodities, prices of onions increased by 33.88 percent, tomatoes 25.74 percent, sugar 6.93 percent, eggs 2.22 percent, meat 1.92 percent, potatoes 1.91 percent, rice 1.6 percent and fish price increased by 1.06 percent during August 2017.
According to the PBS figures, price of fresh fruits decreased by 5.71 percent, chicken 5.58 percent, pulse mash 2.66 percent and pulse masoor price down by 2.03 percent during August as compared to the month of July.