The annual rate of inflation has increased to 10.7 per cent in October, up from 10.5 per cent recorded in September, the highest on record since October, 2016, according to Central Statistical Office (CSO) data.
Announcing Zambia’s annual rate of inflation for the month of October, CSO Interim Statistician General Mulenga Musepa said the continued rise in inflation in October was largely attributable to food price movements, mainly maize products, such as mealie meal, which had again shot up to a national average of K140.29 per 25Kg breakfast bag, the highest on record so far.
“The year-on-year inflation rate as measured by the all items Consumer Price Index (CPI) for October, 2019, increased to 10.7 per cent from 10.5 per cent recorded in September, 2019, indicating an increase of 0.2 percentage points . This means that on average, prices of goods and services increased by 10.7 per cent between October, 2018, and October, 2019,” Musepa told journalists in Lusaka, Thursday.
“The increase in the annual rate of inflation was mainly attributed to food items price movements. The increase in the annual food rate of inflation was mainly attributed to products, such as breakfast mealie meal, roller mealie meal, maize grain, imported rice, meats and meat products (i.e. mixed cut, T-Bone and live chicken).”
He explained that the sustained mealie meal price increments in the past few months had triggered a nearly one percentage point increase in the annual food inflation rate, which fed into the overall annual rate of inflation.
“The year on year (annual) food inflation rate for October, 2019, was recorded at 13.3 per cent compared to 12.4 per cent recorded in September, 2019, indicating an increase of 0.9 percentage point. An increase in the food annual inflation rate was mainly attributed to price movements of food items, such as Breakfast mealie meal, Roller mealie meal, maize grain, imported rice, mixed cut, T-bone and live chicken,” disclosed Musepa.
Of the total 10.7 per cent annual inflation rate recorded in October, food and non-alcoholic beverages accounted for 7.0 percentage points, while non-food items accounted for 3.7 percentage points, according to Musepa.
CSO data reveals that Zambia’s annual rate of inflation of 10.7 per cent recorded in October has peaked to a three-year high since October, 2016, when inflation was 12.5 per cent before it dropped to close 2016 at 7.5 per cent.
Zambia’s annual rate of inflation has continued rising far above the Bank of Zambia’s (BoZ) targeted corridor of 6-8 per cent, and is firmly into double-digit territory before the end of this year.