Food Inflation Severe in Tigray among all Ethiopia’s Regions: Report

State of Tigray sees the highest food inflation rate amongst all regional governments and city administrations in Ethiopia, reaching as much as 23Pct last fiscal year, according to a new report published by the Central Bank. Annual food inflation rate in the Tigray increased by ten percentage points during last fiscal year from being 13Pct in 2017/18, the report says. This is largely resulted from the rise in prices of basic food items in the Region, including wheat, teff and vegetables.

Next to Tigray, the highest food inflation rate was recorded in Dire Dawa (20.7Pct), State of Somali (16.5Pct) and Addis Ababa (15Pct).  In contrast, the lowest food inflation rate was witnessed in State of Southern Nation, Nationalities and People, Afar (11.3Pct), Oromia (11.4Pct) and Benishangul Gumuz (11.4Pct).

The food inflation rate registered in Tigray is also almost eight percentage points higher than the regional average.

“Such an increase is obvious when there is a big mismatch between demand and supply, said Mieuz Hadush (PhD.), an Economist and a lecturer at Mekelle University. “Coupled with the political instability that prevented free movements of goods from other regional states to Tigray, a spike in price of basic food items supplied by the government contributed for the inflationary pressure in the region,” the economist said.

Inflation has been rising alarmingly over the past two years throughout Ethiopia. Last month, the national general inflation rate has reached 19.5Pct, down from 20.8Pct in November, the highest in seven and half years. Likewise, food inflation rate showed a slight decline from 24.5Pct to 22.7Pct last month, while non-food inflation rate declined from 16.4Pct to 15.8Pct.

Samson Berhane

Editor-in-Chief samson.b@ethiopianbusinessreview.net

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