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WORLD NEWS | Pakistan: Inflationary pressures persist

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Karachi [Pakistan]Jan. 3 (ANI): Purchasing power has hit rock bottom amid ongoing inflationary pressures, and goods are still out of reach, Geo News reports.

In line with market expectations, the Consumer Price Index (CPI), an inflation monitor, rose to 24.5% in December from 12.3% a year earlier, the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) reported on Monday.

Read also | International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva has warned that a recession in 2023 will affect a third of the world.

Most consumer goods remained out of reach, despite a slight increase of 0.7% in the index change.

However, the inflation rate fell short of the Treasury’s forecast of a range of 21% to 23%, Geo News reported.

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The data further showed that MoM inflation slowed to 0.5% in December.

The slight increase in inflation was due to higher growth rates for perishable food.

Samiullah Tariq, head of research at Pakistan-Kuwait Investment Corporation, told Geo News that inflation is high due to rising international commodity prices due to the war in Ukraine, floods and crop damage due to the devaluation of the rupee.

“Inflation will be lower after June 2023 when the effects of the adjustment fade,” he predicted.

Meanwhile, food inflation in cities and towns soared 32.7 per cent and 37.9 per cent respectively last month, PBS data showed.

Prices for both perishable and non-perishable food items have risen sharply year-over-year, Geo News reported.

Food prices rose by more than a quarter in December compared with the same month a year earlier. However, the price of perishable food has risen by 55.93%, and the gap between supply and demand is still very large.

Compared with a year ago, onion prices increased by 415%, followed by a 64% increase in tea prices and a 58% increase in wheat prices.

Vegetable ghee and cooking oil prices soared 32%, fresh milk 26% and rice 47%, according to PBS.

Alcohol and tobacco prices soared 35 percent, while clothing and footwear jumped 17.22 percent.

Core inflation, which is calculated after stripping out volatile energy and food prices, rose to 14.7 percent in urban areas and 19 percent in rural areas in December, Geo News reported.

The non-food inflation rate was 14.8% in urban areas and 20.7% in rural areas. Prices for the housing, water, electricity and natural gas fuel group rose nearly 7 percent.

According to PBS, transport group prices rose 42 percent. Oil prices hit record highs in 2022, rising nearly 60%, the most in a year.

Inflation averaged 25.02 per cent in the July-December period of the current financial year, nearly tripling from 9.81 per cent in the same period of the 2021-22 financial year.

Economist Sana Tawfiq told Geo News that persistently rising core inflation is a “major concern”. (Arnie)

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from a Syndicated News feed, the content body may not have been modified or edited by LatestLY staff)



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