Uganda inflation rises to seven-month high in April

Uganda’s inflation rose to a seven-month high in April, dragged higher by an increase in core consumer prices.

The Uganda Bureau of Statistics said the annual growth in the consumer prices index was 3.5% last month, from 3.0% in March. It is the highest growth in the annual inflation rate since September 2018 when the consumer prices index increased by 3.7%.

April’s increase was mainly because of the core inflation rate, which increased 4.8% in the 12 months to the end of the month compared to the 4.6% registered in March.

Read: Consumer prices unchanged in March but core inflation heats up

Ubos said growth in core inflation — which excludes volatile food and energy prices — was driven by “annual other goods inflation that increased to 4.9% for the year ending April 2019 compared to the 4.8% recorded for the year ended March 2019.”

Fish prices, which are included in Other Goods inflation, rose 3.4% in the year to April 2019, up from the 2.4% recorded in March. Services inflation also grew 4.5% from 4.4% a month earlier, driven by an increase in transport prices, particularly road transport prices.

Food crops and related items inflation fell 6.2% in the year to April, up from the decline of 9.9% registered in March, Ubos data shows. This was largely due to an increase in vegetables prices.

Energy, fuels, and utilities inflation rose 5.4% in the year to April, up from 5.3% in March. Firewood prices increased by 19.7% in the year ending April, faster than the growth of 18.3% registered in March. Higher prices for charcoal also drove the rise in energy, fuels and utilities inflation.

The one-month growth rate for consumer prices in April was 0.8%, up from 0.5% in March, Ubos said. Food crops and related items inflation grew 6.6% versus a decline of 3.2% the previous month, driving the increase in the headline rate. The biggest contributor to the increase was fruit prices which rose 8.5% in April versus the decline of 11.9% recorded in March.

Core inflation rose 0.1% month-on-month from 1.0% in March, while energy, fuel, and utilities inflation fell 0.2% in April versus a fall of 0.4% the previous month.