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Headline inflation hits 25.5 percent

Bernard Mphepo

Headline inflation went up to 25.5 percent in August 2022 from 24.6 percent in the preceding month of July, figures released Thursday by National Statistical Office (NSO) show.

The rise in headline inflation is attributed to an increase in both food and non-food inflation, which have reached 33.4 percent and 18.2 percent, respectively, from 32.5 percent and 17.5 percent.

During the same period last year, headline inflation was seen at 8.4 percent.

In its August Monthly Economic Review, Bridgepath Capital said although inflation is expected to return to near pre-pandemic levels by 2024, there is the risk that it may remain high.

“This is on account of the possibility of further supply-related shocks to food and energy prices and subsequent monetary policy tightening. A combination of these events would result in a recession accompanied by high and rising inflation, referred to as stagflation,” the report said.

Centre for Social Concern Programmes Manager on Economic Governance Bernard Mphepo said it is surprising that inflation continues to rise.

He warned that Malawians should brace for tougher economic conditions ahead.

“Normally, the harvesting period in the country ends in September and August. We should not have seen inflation rising but the rise means that the lean period will be worse,” he said.

The Reserve Bank of Malawi, through its recent Monetary Policy Committee, said it was closely monitoring inflation developments, and stands ready to adjust the policy rate upwards should inflationary pressures persist.

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