Food prices continue falling

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FOOD prices in Honiara continue to fall with 0.03 percent drop recorded for April 2018.

The National Statistics Office (NSO) latest Honiara Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the month of April 2018 has revealed.

CPI is a monthly indicator of the variation in prices for retail goods and other items.

The basket of goods chosen represents the spending behaviour of the population of Honiara and the resulting CPI is used to calculate inflation.

Government Statistician (GS) Douglas Kimi while releasing the official statistics on Thursday May 31, 2018 said the slight fall was 0.03 percent from 194.7 in March to 194.6.

He said the price fall was mainly driven by price drops in Drinks and Tobacco, and Household Operation categories of the index, which outweighed price increases in Food, and Housing and Utilities sub-indexes.

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“The Food index went up during the month by 0.9 percent to 181.9. This was mainly driven by price rises in sugar 3.1 percent, and fresh fruits and vegetables sold at the Honiara market; most notable were bush cabbage 25.8 percent, pawpaw 22.0 percent, tomatoes 20.7 percent, fern cabbage 17.0 per cent, cooking banana 3.1percent, green coconut 1.9 percent, spring onion 8.2 percent and green pepper 8.6 percent. These outweighed price drops in dry coconuts -23.5 percent, melon -14.2 percent, Chinese cabbage -8.4 percent, cucumber -7.2 percent, kumara heaps -6.9 percent, cassava -1.6 percent, green bean -0.7 percent, bush lime -8.3 percent and non-alcoholic beverages -0.3 percent to result in the slight rise of the overall food index,” Mr Kimi stated.

Other major changes in other sub-indexes include;

  • Drinks and Tobacco fell 6.7 percent driven by a 1.6 percent and 20.3 percent price drop in tobacco and betel nut, respectively.
  • Clothing and Footwear fell 0.2 percent on account of a 3.1 percent drop in footwear prices.
  • Housing and Utilities went up 0.8 percent largely driven by a 3.5 percent increase in electricity charges.
  • Household Operations dropped 0.2 percent driven by price falls in household cleaning products, notably soap.
  • Miscellaneous Items fell 1.4 percent resulting from drops in the prices of toiletries.

Kimi said apart from the above, price movements elsewhere in the consumption basket were negligible.

“The main underlying rates of inflation based on a 3 months moving average for the month of April 2018 were observed between 0.0 percent and 2.9 percent while the headline inflation rate was at 3.9 percent,” he said.

–SINSO PRESS

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