ISLAMABAD: Short-term inflation stayed steady at 29.41 per cent year over year in the week ending March 28, official data showed on Friday.

Weekly inflation, measured by the Sen­s­itive Price Index (SPI), has remained abo­ve 30pc for the past 18 weeks. The deceleration in the SPI is primarily due to a decrease in the prices of perishable goods.

The SPI witnessed a 0.09pc week-on-week decl­i­ne as of March 28.

The administration’s stringent supervision of prices at the local level resulted in a fall in perishable products. The Ramazan Sasta Bazaar also sells vegetables and fruits at far lower prices than the main markets.

The decline in SPI comes after a consistent 11-week per­iod of inflation above 40pc, which surged from 29pc recorded on Nov 8, 2023. A surge in gas prices, electricity tariffs, and the cost of essential kitchen ite­ms fuelled the spike.

The weekly inflation hit a record 48.35pc year-on-year in early May 2023, but then decelerated as low as 24.4pc in late Aug 2023 before surging past 40pc during the week ending on Nov 16, 2023.

The items whose prices declined week-on-week incl­u­ded tomatoes (12.04pc), wheat flour (3.80pc), garlic (2.59pc), LPG (2.42pc), onions (1.74pc), potatoes (1.07pc), bananas (0.77pc), pulse gram (0.57pc), and sugar (0.49pc).

The items whose prices increased the most over the previous week included chicken (4.92pc), eggs (1.61pc), shirting (0.56pc) and rice irri 6/9 (0.15pc).

On an annual basis, the items whose pri­ces incre­ased the most included gas charges for Q1 (570pc), chillies powder (86.05pc), onions (78.98pc), gents sponge chappal (58.05pc), gents sandal (53.37pc), garlic (52.20pc), gur (37.70pc), chicken (37.57pc), salt powder (33.29pc), sugar (31.56pc), energy saver (29.83pc) and pulse mash (27.09pc).—

Published in Dawn, March 30th, 2024

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