Inflation soars to 8.1%

The annual rate of inflation has leaped to 8.1 per cent, up from 7.8 per cent recorded in July, the highest on record this year so far, according to Central Statistical Office data.

Announcing Zambia’s annual rate of inflation for the month of August, CSO acting director of census and statistics Goodson Sinyenga said the rise in inflation this month was largely attributable to price movements in both food and non-food items such as mealie meal, among others.

“The year-on-year inflation rate as measured by the all items Consumer Price Index (CPI) for August, 2018, increased to 8.1 per cent from 7.8 per cent recorded in July, 2018. This means that on average, prices of goods and services increased by 8.1 per cent between August, 2017, and August, 2018,” Sinyenga told journalists in Lusaka, Thursday.

“The increase in the annual rate of inflation is mainly attributed to both food and non-food items such as breakfast mealie meal, purchase of vehicles and charcoal.”

According to Sinyenga, food and non-alcoholic beverages accounted for 4.4 percentage points, while non-food items accounted for a total of 3.7 percentage points.

CSO data reveals that Zambia’s annual rate of inflation of 8.1 per cent recorded this month is the highest on record since November, 2016, when inflation was at 8.8 per cent from 12.5 per cent in October, 2016, before it dropped to close 2016 at 7.5 per cent.

Zambia’s annual rate of inflation has exceeded the Bank of Zambia’s targeted corridor of 6-8 per cent forecast for the short-to-medium term.

Although the central bank have since projected that inflation will likely remain above the 7.5 per cent threshold owing to elevated risks, such as higher than anticipated food prices and fiscal deficits, among others.

         

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