Consumer prices in Bangladesh have increased at the fastest rate in a decade with inflation surging to 9.5 percent in August.
The index fell slightly to 9.1 percent in September, State Minister for Planning Shamsul Alam told http://bdnews24.com on Wednesday.
The Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics has not yet published the inflation data for August and September. Planning Minister MA Mannan on Monday claimed inflation came under control in September after a rise in August. Mannan defended the delay in publishing the data, saying it was caused by “administrative reasons”.
August’s inflation was a sharp 2 percentage point rise from July. Shamsul did not give further details.
The Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics generally publishes consumer price data in the first half of a month, but it did not release the data for August in September. Many analysts believe the BBS’s inflation data is flawed and the key index is actually much higher than it is reported by the national statistical agency.
As it did not publish the data for August, some suspected the index continued to increase sharply amid rising prices.
Despite a rise in prices of fuel oil that drove up the cost of living, Mannan said inflation decreased in September because of the government programme under which 10 million families are receiving daily necessities, such as rice, lentil and cooking oil, at subsidised prices.
The minister hoped the cost-of-living crisis will ease with the downfall of inflation in future.
Bangladesh saw more than 9.5 percent rise in inflation for the last time in the July-April period of 2011-12 fiscal year. In September 2011, inflation increased by 11.97 percent. The lowest rise in inflation during those 10 months was 9.93 percent in April.
Consumer prices fell to 7.48 percent in July this year from a nine-year peak of 7.56 percent in the previous month.
The government set an average inflation target of 5.6 percent for this fiscal year.
But prices of food and other commodities have been rising across the world for the past few months as the Ukraine-Russia war dealt a heavy blow to the global economy, which was still recovering from the pandemic-era sluggishness.