— 2mins read
THE Consumer Price Index (CPI) released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Friday reveals that food prices in Nigeria remain unaffordable despite a drop in the country’s inflation rate to 17.75 per cent.
The inflation statistics released by the NBS showed that the rate dropped from 17.93 per cent in May to the present rate of 17.75 in June, representing a decrease of o.18 per cent.
The current composite food index (June, 2021) rose to 21.83 per cent, when compared to 22.28 per cent in May. Although food prices were on the to rise, it was at a much slower speed than in the previous month (May, 2021).
The composite food index rose to 21.83 per cent in June 2021 compared to 22.28 per cent in May 2021. This rise resulted from the increase in prices of bread and cereals, potatoes, yam and other tubers, milk, cheese and eggs, fish, soft drinks, vegetables, oils and fats and meat.
On month-on-month basis, the food sub-index increased by 1.11 per cent in June 2021, up by 0.06 per cent points from 1.05 per cent recorded in May 2021.
The average annual rate of change of the food sub-index for the 12-month period ending June 2021 over the previous 12-month average was 19.72 per cent, 0.54 per cent points from the average annual rate of change recorded in May 2021 (19.18 per cent).
The core inflation, which excludes the prices of volatile agricultural produce, stood at 13.09 per cent in June 2021, down by 0.06 per cent when compared with 13.15 per cent recorded in May 2021.
The core sub-index increased by 0.81 per cent in June 2021 on month-on-month basis. This was down by 0.43 per cent when compared with 1.24 per cent recorded in May 2021.
The prices of garments, passenger travel by air and by road, motor cars and vehicle spare parts, shoes and other footwear, pharmaceutical products, medical services, hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishments, cleaning, repair and hire of clothing, clothing materials, other articles of clothing and clothing accessories, furniture and furnishing and fuels and lubricants for personal transport equipment, recorded the highest increases.
One an average 12-month annual rate of change, the index was 11.75 per cent for the 12-month period ending June 2021. This is 0.25 per cent point higher than 11.50 per cent recorded in May 2021.
All Items Inflation
All-items inflation on year on year basis was highest in Kogi (23.78), Bauchi (20.67per cent) and Jigawa (19.81per cent), while Cross River (15.53per cent), Delta (15.18per cent) and Abuja (15.15per cent) recorded the slowest rise in headline year-on-year inflation.
On month-on-month basis, however, in the same month, all-items inflation was highest in Kano (2.22per cent), Akwa Ibom (1.98per cent) and Osun (1.92per cent), while Bauchi (0.00per cent) recorded no change in headline month-on-month with Abuja and Cross River recording price deflation or negative inflation (general decrease in the general price level of food or a negative food inflation rate).
In June 2021, food inflation on year-on-year basis was highest in Kogi (30.34per cent), Enugu (25.18per cent) and Kwara (24.78per cent), while Bauchi (18.97per cent), River (18.92per cent) and Abuja (17.09per cent) recorded the slowest rise in year on year inflation.
On month-on-month basis however, June 2021 food inflation was highest in Jigawa (2.67per cent), Edo (2.43) and Cross River (2.16per cent), while Lagos (0.14per cent), Borno (0.06per cent) and Kwara (0.02per cent recorded the slowest rise in food inflation.
In addition to the impact of insecurity and COVID-19, food inflation has been an important metric in determining economic recovery and stability. High costs of feeding has its toll on living and displaces citizens below poverty line.
A Benue State-based farmer Daniels Terver explained that the major problems affecting farmers such as herder-farmer crisis, logistics and high cost of production were yet to change in the country, attributing it to high cost of food in the country.
“Many farmers in Benue, which is the food basket of the nation, are not farming due to herdsmen who are ready to destroy farms and kill people. What then do you expect?”
Terver, also an economist, explained that fall in general inflation could be attributed to open borders since December 2020 and ease of COVID-19 lockdown.