The latest data released by Ethiopia’s Central Statistical Agency (CSA) indicate that from 34.7 percent in March, Ethiopia’s inflation rate hit a record high of 36.6 percent in April.
The East African country is experiencing its highest inflation in a decade. However, the CSA stated that the inflation rate for food items had a marginal decrease of 0.5 percentage points from the previous month, reaching 42.9 percent in April.
“However, the non-food inflation soared to 28.1 percent in April, a big increase from March when it was 23.5 percent,” the CSA said.
The CSA data showed the seasonal effect of celebrating two major religious festivals — the Ethiopian Orthodox Easter and the Islamic Eid al-Fitr has increased the prices of both food and non-food items in April.
“The prices for rice, teff (Ethiopia’s staple crop), wheat, maize, sorghum, pulses, meat, milk, cheese, eggs and spices slightly increased in the current month, though the price of imported cooking oil showed a slight decline,” said the CSA report. “The increase in non-food inflation is mainly due to rise in prices of items such as alcohol and tobacco, clothing and footwear, housing repair and maintenance, energy, home furnishings, fuel, medical care and jewelry.”
The steady increase in the rate of inflation in Ethiopia is happening despite local and federal authorities’ efforts to control inflationary pressures through administrative actions.
Apart from climate change-induced drought conditions in southern and eastern Ethiopia, the combined effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, conflicts in various parts of Ethiopia have largely upset the Ethiopian government’s efforts to stem the rising cost of living.
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