14 February 2019

Tanzania: Annual Headline Inflation Drops to 3pc, Report Shows

CONSUMERS' spending less on commodities during last January has given them relief after enabling them to save more money and spend it on other needs.

This comes from the fact that the annual headline inflation rate last month decreased to 3.0 per cent from 3.3 per cent recorded in the previous month, according to a new report released yesterday.

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) report released yesterday indicates that the speed of price change for commodities for the year ended January 2019 has decreased compared to the speed of the price change recorded for the year ending December 2018.

The overall index went up to 113.38 in January, 2019 from 110.13 recorded in January 2018, NBS's Population, Census and Social Statistics Director Ephraim Kwesigabo said when speaking to reporters in Dodoma.

On food and non-food inflation rates, the report says food and non-alcoholic beverages inflation rate for January 2019 has decreased to 0.7 per cent from 1.0 per cent recorded in December 2018.

"The annual inflation rate for food consumed at home and away from home has also decreased to 2.3 per cent in January 2019 from 2.6 per cent recorded in December 2018," he explained.

Moreover, the 12-month index change for non-food products in January 2019 has decreased to 5.1 per cent from 5.4 per cent recorded in December 2018.

However, the annual inflation rate, which excludes food and energy for January 2019, has stagnated at 3.1 per cent as recorded in December 2018.

Mr Kwesigabo noted that the National Consumer Price Index (NCPI) used to compute this type of inflation rate excluded food consumed at home and restaurants, non-alcoholic beverages, petrol, diesel, gas, kerosene, charcoal, firewood and electricity.

He argued that excluding food and energy, which are the most volatile components of the total NCPI, could provide a more stable inflation rate figure for policy makers.

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