Malawi’s year-on-year headline inflation for August has quickened by 0.9 percentage points to hit 25.5 percent, triggered by a rise in food and non-food prices.
National Statistical Office (NSO) figures published yesterday show that during the same period last year, inflation was recorded at 8.4 percent.
This means prices of goods and services during the period under review quickened compared to the same period last year.
The figures show that food inflation went up 33.4 percent, a rise from 32.5 percent the previous month while non-food inflation rose to18.2 percent in August from 17.5 percent the previous month.
Consumers Association of Malawi executive director John Kapito said the rise in inflation rate is not surprising as food and non-food prices continue to rise.
“This cements what consumers have been complaining about for some time. It is extremely hard in a country where the majority is experiencing economic hardships.
“The current inflation figures are just the beginning of serious future challenges to be faced by Malawians,” he said.
Catholic University of Malawi economics lecturer Hopkins Kawaye yesterday said the trend, which is expected to continue on account of imported inflation, among others, spells doom for ordinary Malawians.
“This will affect most Malawians who cannot afford to increase their expenditure in view of the rising commodity prices. Instead, they will have to cut expenses, thus increasing poverty levels,” he said.
In Malawi, maize, as part of the food component, accounts for about 52 percent of the consumer price index, an aggregate basket of goods and services used in computing inflation.
Meanwhile, local maize prices have continued to rise, averaging K369 per kilogramme.