Mozambique: Annual Inflation 3.5 Per Cent

Maputo — Despite the price rises expected during the festive season, the monthly inflation rate in Mozambique in December, based on the consumer price indices of the three largest cities (Maputo, Nampula and Beira), was only 1.28 per cent, according to the latest data published by the National Statistics Institute (INE).

This brought the January-December annual inflation rate to 3.5 per cent, which is virtually the same as the previous year's rate of 3.52 per cent. The government has thus easily met its target of keeping inflation to a single digit (i.e. less than ten per cent).

Most of the price rises that did take place in December were for foodstuffs. Thus the average price of tomatoes rose by 35.1 per cent, of onions by 21.1 per cent, of lettuce by 27.9 per cent, of cabbage by 18.4 per cent, and of groundnuts by 6.4 per cent. There were no significant changes in the prices of any goods and services outside of food and drink.

The food price rises meant that December had the highest inflation rate of any month in 2019, and the highest since March 2017.

Comparing the three cities, the INE notes that Beira suffered the largest rise in inflation in December - 2.55 per cent - followed by Maputo (1.02 per cent) and Nampula (1.8 per cent).

Taking the year as a whole, the sharpest annual inflation rate, of 4.78 per cent, was in Beira - doubtless resulting from the impact of cyclone Idai, which devastated the city in March.

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