The consumer price index (CPI) for December 2017 has witnessed a marginal increment, after it decreased in last October last. The CPI increased by 0.1 percentage points from 11.7 percent in November to 11.8 percent in December, 2017.
However, the inflation projected by the government for the end of last year was at 11.2 percent. The CPI measures the change over time in the general price level of goods and services that households acquire for consumption. At a press briefing in Accra, Mr Baah Wadieh, the Acting Government Statistician, attributed the increase of the inflation to the changes that occurred in the non-food category.
Wadieh indicated that, for December, the prices drivers were in four sub-groups which recorded higher rates than the non-food group average of 13.6 percent. These were clothing and footwear which recorded the highest rate with 18.8 percent, as transport followed with 18.7 percent. Recreation and culture, and furnishings and household equipment recorded 17.5 and 15.2 percentages respectively.
The non-food group recorded a rate of 13.6 percent, same as the rate recorded for November, 2017. The lowest sub-group was health, with 6.3 percent, up from 5.5 percent recorded in November 2017.
The food and non-alcoholic beverages group recorded a rate of 8.0 percent. This is 0.1 percentage point higher than the rates recorded in the previous month.
Two sub-groups of the food and non-alcoholic beverages recorded a rate higher than the group’s average rate. These were vegetables, with 10.0 percent, representing a 1.0 percentage point increase from the previous month, and fish and sea food, with 8.8 percent. These were the price drivers for the food inflation rate.
Wadieh noted that the non-food group was widely affected by policy changes in the year, whereas the food group was affected by the seasonality of the year. At the regional level, four regions, namely the Upper West, Greater Accra, Brong Ahafo and Ashanti recorded inflation rates above the national average of 11.8 percent. The Upper West Region recorded the highest rate of 12.8 percent, followed by the Greater Accra Region, with 12.7 percent. The Upper East Region recorded the lowest inflation rate of 10.2 percent in December.
By Joshua W. Amlanu