December inflation records deflation

Alex Shimuafeni

Namibia’s annual inflation rate stood at 5,3% in December 2023, compared to 6,9% recorded in December 2022.

According to the monthly Namibia Consumer Price Index Bulletin released by the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA), the inflation rate for December 2023 recorded a deflation of 0,1% compared to 0,3% the preceding month.

The bulletin said the major contributors to the annual inflation rate for December 2023 were food and non-alcoholic beverages (1,4 percentage points); alcoholic beverages and tobacco (1,1 percentage points); housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (0,8 percentage points) and transport (0,6 percentage points).

According to the bulletin, signed by NSA chief executive Alex Shimuafeni, the highest changes in the annual inflation rate were mainly witnessed in the categories of recreation and culture (10%); alcoholic beverages and tobacco (8,4%); food and non-alcoholic beverages (7,4%); hotels, cafés and restaurants (6,5%); furnishings, household equipment and routine maintenance of the house (5,1%); miscellaneous goods and services (4,9%) and transport (4%).

“The annual inflation rate for housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels component which accounts for 28,4% of the consumer basket, registered an increase of 3,4% during December 2023, compared to 2,1% witnessed in December 2022,” noted the bulletin.

On a monthly basis, the inflation rate stood at 0,0%, unchanged compared to the previous month.

Food and non-alcoholic beverages, which account for 16,5% of the NCPI basket, registered an annual inflation rate of 7,4% during December 2023, compared to 11,8% registered in the corresponding period of 2022.

On a monthly basis, prices for food and non-alcoholic beverages increased by 0,5% in December 2023 unchanged from the previous month.

The food sub-category accounts for 14,8% of the consumer basket in the NCPI. Bread, and cereals account for the highest weight of food items that consumers purchase, having a weight of (4,8%) followed by meat (3,5%); sugar, jam, honey, syrups, chocolate and confectionery (1,4%); vegetables and milk, cheese and eggs (1,2%) each.

Food and non-alcoholic beverages which account for 16,5% of the NCPI basket, registered an annual inflation rate of 7,4% during December 2023, compared to 11,8% in the corresponding period of 2022.

The Zonal inflation rates for December 2023 revealed that Zone 1 (Kavango East, Kavango West, Kunene, Ohangwena, Omusati, Oshana, Oshikoto, Otjozondjupa, and Zambezi regions) recorded the highest annual inflation rate of 5,9%, followed by Zone 2, (Khomas region) which recorded an inflation rate of 5% and Zone 3’s (//Kharas, Erongo, Hardap, Omaheke regions) annual inflation rate was 4,9%.

Analysis of the average retail prices of selected products for December 2023 revealed that consumers in Zone 2 paid the highest price for Pure Sunflower oil (750 ml) at N$37,63 followed by Zone 1 at N$31,11 while consumers in Zone 3 paid the least price of N$30,12.

“For honey (500 g), consumers in Zone 2 paid the highest price of N$107,41 followed by Zone 3 at N$90,63, while Zone 1 paid the lowest price of N$82,75,” said the NSA.

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