SIB stats: Inflation rate at 1.1%

 

The latest figures on consumer prices released by the Statistical Institute of Belize show that  for the year 2017, Belize reported an annual national inflation rate of 1.1 percent.  For the month of December 2017, the average Belizean household experienced a one percent increase in the cost of regularly purchased goods and services. During the month of December 2017, the ‘Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ category saw a marginal increase of 0.1 percent when compared to December of 2016. This was, however, because of a net increase in ‘Food’ prices being offset by lower prices for ‘Non-alcoholic Beverages’; those beverages that went down in price are Coffee and Tea, says the Statistical Institute of Belize.  On the other hand, ‘Alcoholic Beverages’ saw an 8.2 percent rise for the month, due mainly to higher beer prices compared to December 2016,  following the increase in excise taxes earlier in 2017.  As expected, the ‘Transport’ category of the Economy was the single greatest contributor to the overall rise in consumer prices for the month of December 2017.  The ‘Fuel and Lubricants’ subcategory was up by 5.7 percent, with all types of fuel recording increases during the month. The average price for petrol in December was about  $1.00 per gallon more expensive that last year.  Even International airfare prices reported a significant increase of 33 percent, while domestic bus fare prices were 4.5 percent higher than they were last year December. Prices within the ‘Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels’ category rose by 0.9 percent overall due to a 0.4 percent increase in home rental costs and higher Butane prices. The average cost of a 100-pound cylinder of LPG, commonly known as Butane,  rose by 18 percent, from $83.90 in December 2016 to $99 in December 2017. Punta Gorda Town recorded the highest increase in consumer prices with a reported 1.8 percent inflation rate. They saw one of the most significant increases in ‘Food’ prices, and increases in the cost of household and domestic services. SIB says Belmopan City, however, reported the largest decline in home rental costs, resulting in the capital having the country’s lowest inflation rate of 0.1 percent for December 2017

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