High fuel prices push inflation to three-month high
Prices of charcoal and kerosene surged in the month of June sending inflation to 4.28 per cent, the highest in three months.
Data released yesterday from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) showed that despite food inflation easing, the rise in cost of energy was among key drivers of inflation from 3.95 per cent recorded in May.
Budget to crash the poorest
Year-on-year, the basket of housing, water electricity, gas and other fuels jumped 14.17 per cent, being the fastest among the 12 broad commodity groups considered to measure inflation.
“This was mainly attributed to significant increase in prices of kerosene and charcoal which outweighed decreases in electricity charges,” said KNBS Director General Zachary Mwangi in a statement.
The price of four kilos of charcoal averaged Sh138.13 in the month of June being 69.07 per cent higher than it did in the same month last year. Last year, it cost Sh81.70. The price increase was further fueled by government directive that placed a 90-day ban on logging.
Avoid fake news! Subscribe to the Standard SMS service and receive factual, verified breaking news as it happens. Text the word ‘NEWS’ to 22840
A litre of kerosene, popular for cooking and lighting, rose by 28.78 per cent year-on-year to Sh85.05. May to June, the price jump was 7.42 per cent. Price of diesel and petrol also jumped by 4.98 per cent and 1.51 per cent respectively.
In mid-June price review, the Energy Regulatory Authority increased the price of a litre of kerosene by Sh5.88 while that of diesel and petrol rose by Sh4.96 and Sh1.64 in that order.
Price of kerosene is set for another high if National Treasury’s proposal to increase duty from Sh7.21 per litre to Sh10.31 per litre in a bid to tame adulteration menace. Cost pressure is now shifting away from food and non-alcoholic beverages to other basket of goods. For instance, month-no-month, food inflation eased by 2.2 per cent while that of the rest of the 11 baskets accelerated.
According to KNBS data, the price of a kilo of cabbages has dropped by more than a third (33.4 per cent) year-on-year while the same quantity of loose maize grain and Irish potatoes has dropped by 18.67 per cent and 19.18 per cent respectively.
Cartels turn to boda boda to drive up charcoal trade