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Nigeria’s inflation rate falls but food prices still high

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For the first time since 2015, consumer price index (CPI), which measures inflation in the economy, fell, signalling a recovery in the Nigerian economy.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), the inflation rate dropped from 18.72 percent in January 2017, to 17.78 percent in February 2017.

“On a Headline basis, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) which measures inflation increased by 17.78 percent (year-on-year) albeit at a slower pace in February 2017, 0.94 percent points lower from the rate recorded in January (18.72) percent,” NBS said on Tuesday.

“This represents the first time in 15 months that the headline CPI has declined on year on year basis representing the effects of slower rises in already high food and non food prices and favourable base effects over 2016 prices.”

The country however recorded price increases in “housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuel, education, food and alcoholic beverages, clothing and frontware and transportation services”.

Despite the signs of recovery seen in the core inflation rate, food prices remain on the rise, with a surge in the food index, from 17.82 percent in January to 18.53 percent (year-on-year) in February.

The increase was driven by “increases in the prices of bread, cereals, meat, fish, potatoes, yams and other tubers and wine, while the slowest increase in food prices year-on-year were recorded by Soft Drinks, Coffee, Tea and Cocoa”.

Despite the fall, inflation rate remains at one of the highest points since Olusegun Obasanjo’s era as the Nigerian President.


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