By Fred Sarpong
The year 2013 has started with a year-on-year inflation rate of 8.8%, recorded in January 2013. This is measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI).
This means that the general price level went up by 8.8% over the one year period from January 2012 to January 2013.
The monthly change rate for January 2013 was 2.1%. This means that the general price level went up by 2.1% for the one month period between December 2012 and January 2013. The monthly rate for December 2012 was 0.7%.
Dr. Philomena Nyarko, the acting Government Statistician announced this to the media in Accra last week. She stated that the food inflation rate of 3.9% was about three times lower than the non-food inflation rate 11.6%
According to her the food and non-alcoholic beverages group recorded an average year-on-year inflation rate of 3.9%, the same as recorded in December 2012. Under this group, eight subgroups recorded inflation rates above the group’s average inflation rate of 3.9%.
These includes mineral waters, soft drinks and juices 18.0%; coffee, tea and cocoa 15.3%; milk, cheese and eggs 12.2%; meat 11.8%; sugar, jam, honey, syrups, chocolate and confectionary 10.7%; oil and fats 8.4%; bread and cereals 7.6%; and food products 4.6%. The following were below 3.9%. They are fish 1.0%; vegetables include potatoes and others with negative 0.8% and fruits had negative 5.0%.
The Government Statistician noted that inflation in local food products was significantly lower than that of imported food products.’ Inflation rates for rice and bread (wheat) were most important imported food items recorded in January 2013,’ she added.
Within the Non-food group, seven sub-groups recorded inflation rates higher than the group’s average rate of 11.5%. These include education 21.9%; alcoholic beverages, tobacco and narcotics 17.0%; clothing and footwear 16.3%; miscellaneous goods and services 15.0%; furnishing, household equipment 14.5%; recreation and culture 14.5%; and housing, water, electricity, gas and other utilities 12.2%. Health 11.2%; hotels, cafes and restaurants 8.3%; transport 7.4%; and communications 0.4% were recorded below the sector average rate of 11.5%.
At the regional level, the year-on-year inflation rate ranged from 5.8% in the Volta Region to 11.0% in the Greater Accra Region. Four regions, namely Greater Accra 11.0%, Northern 9.4%, Central 9.4%, and Ashanti 9.2%, recorded inflation rates above the national average of 8.8%. The other six regions, which rates were below the 8.8% are Eastern 8.0%, Brong Ahafo 7.9%, Upper East and Upper West 7.4%, Western 7.0%, and Volta 5.8%.