Rising food, fuel prices present new threats to inflation - Ubos   

Fuel prices have in less than a week increased to levels that were last seen over a year ago. Photo / Edgar R Batte 

What you need to know:

  • Fuel and some food prices have in less than a week risen at rates that were last seen more than a year ago

Rising fuel and food prices remain a key threat at a time when inflation is declining, according to details from Uganda Bureau of Statistics (Ubos). 

Data from Ubos indicates that during August, inflation slightly declined to 3.5 percent from 3.9 percent in July.

However, price increase among some key commodities continues to present inflationary pressures last seen more than a year ago. 

Fuel prices, especially petrol, have in less than a week increased by an average of 6.2 percent or more than Shs300 to Shs5,210, which presents renewed inflationary pressures. 

Diesel has remained largely stable at an average of Shs4,880, but experts have indicated it could also move northwards in the coming days.   

On the other hand, prices of selected food items have been increasing, with cooking bananas (matooke) and round onions registering some of the largest increases. 

During August, Ubos indicated, monthly food crops and related items inflation increased by 3.6 percent from a 3.1 percent drop, which implies that food and related items were a little bit more expensive than they were in July. 

While presenting the Consumer Price Index in Kampala yesterday, Ms Aliziki Kaudha Lubega, the Ubos director macroeconomic statistics, said the main drivers of the increase in food crops and related items prices was vegetables, tubers, plantains, cooking bananas and pulses inflation, which increased by 2.9 percent from a 3.6 percent drop in July.

This, she said, was specifically due to cooking bananas (matooke) inflation, which increased by 7.1 percent in August from a 17.6 percent drop in July, while round onions prices increased by 55.1 percent from 13.6 percent in July.  

Mango prices increased by 33.3 percent in August from the 3.7 percent, while fresh leaf vegetables increased by 8.9 percent compared to a 1.2 percent drop in July 2023.

Core inflation, which measures  change in prices of goods and services, but does not include those from the food and energy sectors, rose by 0.2 percent in August due to services inflation, which rose by 0.2 percent, in addition to an increase in other goods inflation to 0.2 percent. 

During the period, energy fuel and utilities inflation increased by 1.1 percent due to solid fuels inflation, which rose by 3.9 percent as a result of a 5.7 percent increase in the prices of charcoal and firewood, which rose by 0.4 percent. 

Other commodity price increases were recorded among rice, which slowed down to 17.8 percent, while maize flour prices slowed down  to 1  percent in August from 6.9 percent 

During the period the rate of price increase of dried kapenta (mukene) slowed to 22.3 percent from 37.3 percent, while groundnuts (pounded) prices slowed to 4.4 percent compared to 16.2 percent in July.