Daily News  :: East Africa

Kenya inflation rises to 15.6 percent

Published: 03-JAN-07

Nairobi - Higher food and escalating fuel prices shoved inflation rates up to 15.6 percent in December from 14.6 percent the previous month, the Kenyan Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) said here Tuesday.

It said the overall inflation rose in December due to higher food prices, sparked off by the rise in prices of sugar, onions, tomatoes and non-alcoholic drinks. The cost of fuel also rose sharply despite lower international oil prices.

"The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 2.6 percent month on month, to 214.1 points in December from November's 208.6," the CBS said in a statement issued here.

The Kenyan government moved in to avert what it called an "artificial shortage of sugar" during the Christmas festivities by ordering retailers to purchase the commodity from sugar millers, accusing distributors of hoarding the commodity.

But this did not ease the prices of sugar, which then rose from 72.13 Shillings ($1.04) to 95 shillings ($1.37) a kilo in December.

The food-sparked rise in inflation, did not however, dampen the underlying inflation rate, which remained unchanged at 5.9 percent, against a target of below 5 percent.

The cost of fuel and power increased by 0.7 percent in December, the CBS said.- Panapress

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