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‘Low-income earners in tough economic times’

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Centre for Social Concern (Cfsc) has said low-income earners in the country continue facing economic challenges as the gap between the cost of living and what they get at the end of the month is wide.

Cfsc has urged the government to stop merely talking, with an aim of achieving political mileage, and do everything possible to lift farmers out of poverty.

In its basic needs basket statement for July, CFSC reveals that the cost of living for an average family of six living in the city of Lilongwe, Zomba and peri-urban of Mangochi has risen to K187,652, K162,090 and K172,609 in July from K182,484, K157,450 and K167,109, respectively, in June.

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This change represents an increase of 2.8 percent, 2.9 percent and 3.3 percent, respectively.

However, during the same period, there was a decrease in the cost of living in Blantyre, Mzuzu and Karonga, showing a decrease to K186, 060, K147,533 and K140, 574 respectively in July, from K189,370, K153, 984 and K143, 561 respectively in June.

In its monthly survey of the cost of living in Lilongwe, Zomba and Mangochi for July, the centre shows that prices of maize, green vegetables, electricity, house rentals and water are the main explanation for the rise in the food basket.

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In Zomba, the average price of maize went up by 11 percent, from an average price of K248 per kilogramme in June 2016 to an average price of K276 per kilogramme.

In the lakeshore town of Mangochi, the average price of maize went up by 13 percent, from an average price of K260 per kilogramme in June 2016 to an average price of K293 per kilogramme.

The average national cost of living between June and July has increased by 0.26% from K165, 660 in June to K166, 086 in July.

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