Inflation Up 3.7% in Q1-2018, Compared to Q1-2017

AMMAN —AlGhad— Official market and economic data indicate the quarterly inflation index has increased by 3.7 per cent, during the first three months of the year, Q1-2018, compared to the median price index of the Q1-2017.

The inflation index in March 2018 stood at 124.0 points, compared to 118.8 in March 2017, citing a 4.4 per cent hike, on the annual index and a 0.4 per cent hike since February.

The rise in inflation is mostly due to the government’s new taxation policies, which entailed desubsidising various commodities, including bread.

These revamps hiked the sales tax for some 164 commodities to 10 per cent, in addition to formerly exempt commodities, now subject to a 4-5 per cent tax.

Meanwhile, just 45 days into the new fiscal years, the government raised transport prices by 10 per cent, not to mention the 6 per cent hike in octane fuel prices, overall.

Additionally, bread desubsidisation has nearly doubled bread prices, driving up bread prices on average by 100% since the decision.

Notably, inflation is reflective to the increase in the costs of commodities and life in general within a given economy.

In terms of sectors, tobacco and cigarettes saw the most increased in price indices, averaging at around 16.7 per cent, during the first quarter of the year. Grains followed at 15.5 per cent, and Transportation at 8.8 per cent.

On the other hand, the range of produce and legumes, included dried and canned agricultural foodstuff, has seen a 14.5 per cent decline in price index. Dairy and eggs followed at gap, averaging around 2 per cent.

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