Egypt’s headline inflation jumps to 5.9%, monthly rate up to 1.6% in April: CAPMAS

Doaa A.Moneim , Sunday 10 May 2020

File Photo: An Egyptian woman shops at a fruits market in Cairo, Egypt. (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt’s Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) announced on Sunday the annual (headline) inflation rate for April, which has jumped to 5.9 percent, up from 4.6 percent in March, increasing more that 1 percent, the highest rate since January.

It came under the rate registered in April 2019, which was 12.5 percent, according to CAPMAS.

For monthly inflation, CAPMAS said that it was up to 1.6 percent in April, up from 0.6 percent in March.

Annual inflation rate in cities has upped to 5.9 percent in April compared to 5.1 percent in March, with a monthly rate of 1.3 percent and 2 percent for urban areas in the same month, according to CAPMAS.

CAMPAS attributed the increases to the hike in prices of vegetables, fruits, and seafood, which increased by 9.5 percent, 13.9 percent and 9.1 percent respectively.

The increases also came as a result of the prices increases in poultry and livestock with 5.5 percent, dairies and eggs with 0.4 percent, ready garments with 0.5 percent, and patient services that are introduced through the out-patient clinics with 0.9 percent, according to CAPMAS.

Despite the increases over all inflation rates, they came within the limits that the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) set for inflation by 9 percent.

The inflation rate in Egypt is expected to soar to 7.3 percent by the end of this quarter, ends in June, according to Trading Economics (TE) global macro models and analysts’ expectations.

For its outlook, TE estimates the inflation rate in Egypt to stand at 8.5 percent in 12 months’ time, while in the long-term, the inflation rate is projected to trend around 7.60 percent in 2021 and 7.50 percent in 2022.

In its outlook for global economy announced in April, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expected that Egypt’s consumer prices, which set the inflation rate, will record 5.9 percent over 2020, and up to 8.2 percent in 2021.

On 16 March, after cutting the key interest rates by 3 percent (300 bps), the CBE explained that the cuts were a pre-emptive decision to provide appropriate support to domestic economic activity given the current challenging external environment, while the inflation outlook remains consistent with achieving the inflation target of 9 percent (±3 percentage points) in the fourth quarter of 2020.

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