Pakistan: Rampant inflation sees a downward trend


According to the sensitive price index (SPI), Pakistan’s weekly inflation has seen a downward trend since the last two weeks, declining by 0.07% during the week ending on December 9.

As per the provisional figures laid forth by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), the prices of 19 essential items, including onions, bananas, tomatoes, potatoes, chicken, sugar and LPG etc., went down during the outgoing week.

Meanwhile, the SPI inflation recorded a spike of 18.58% year-on-year.

The rates of 23 essential goods stood unchanged. On the other hand, the prices of pulses saw an increase within a range of 2-3.5%.

On Sunday, the business community expressed their concern over spiralling oil and electricity prices in the country, which were the primary cause of inflation and stagnant economic growth.

President SAARC Chambers Iftikhar Ali Malik said that gradual hikes in oil and electricity prices affected the supply of other goods. He said the manufacturers would ultimately have to increase the cost of goods due to surging oil prices.

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He urged the government to curb the increasing price trend of electricity and petroleum products. Malik said the commoner was suffering because commodity prices were shooting up.

On the other hand, Prime Minister Imran Khan claimed that Pakistan was still among the cheapest countries in the region. He assured people that the prices of daily-use items would be brought down in the next three to four months.

PM Khan said inflation was the biggest problem globally, courtesy of the coronavirus pandemic. He said inflation was not a phenomenon being witnessed only in Pakistan.

“When lockdowns were being imposed worldwide, the United States saw record-high inflation. Unfortunately, Pakistan has been impacted too, but we are transferring less pressure on the vulnerable segments of our economy.”

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