Inflation down to 2.1% in April

By Edwin Muhumuza

The Annual Headline Inflation for the year ending April 2021 was recorded at 2.1 compared to the 2.7 percent recorded for the year ended March 2021.

According to the Director Macro Economic Statistics at the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) Kaudha Aliziki Lubega, while releasing the Consumer Price Index for the month of April, she noted that the decrease is mainly attributed to the Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages Inflation that decreased to minus 2.0 percent for the year ending April 2021 compared to the 0.4 percent rise registered for the year ended March 2021.

‘In addition, Annual inflation for Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other

Fuels decreased to minus 1.5 percent compared to the minus 0.8 percent in the same period.

Relatedly, Annual inflation for Restaurants and Accommodation Services decreased to 0.1 percent compared to the 0.4 percent registered for the year ended March 2021.

However there were increases in transport at 19.6 percent compared to 18.8 percent, personal care, social protection and miscellaneous goods as well as clothing, footwear and health which increased to 2.5, 1.3 and 5.5 percent for the year ending April 2021

Compared to 1.9, 1.0 and 5.4 percent for the year ended March 2021 respectively.

The Annual Core Inflation was recorded at 2.9 percent compared to 3.4 percent on account of Annual inflation for Other Goods that registered 0.3 percent in April 2021 compared to the 1.3 percent in March. Meanwhile the Annual Services Inflation registered 6.0 percent the same rate recorded for the year ended March 2021.

Regionally inflation was recorded highest in Jinja at 3.1 percent followed by Masaka at 2.8 percent while Fort portal had the least inflation at 1% rise.

Among the items with the highest was cooking oil, mangoes, cucumber, peas, pine apple, chicken off layers ,yams, greens, sweet potatoes, Matooke, green paper, ground nuts, onions, sim sim, apples, fresh beans , tea leaves, aluminium suitcases, pumpkins and Malewa.

Those that have seen a reduction in prices include, passion fruits, firewood, dried fish, sweet bananas, chicken croilers, sugar, tomatoes, garlic, yogurt, vegetables, Nile perch, sugar cane, fresh okra and pancakes.

Uganda’s Inflation rises to 4.1%

By Edwin Muhumuza

The Annual Headline Inflation for the year ending March 2021 is recorded at 4.1 percent compared to the 3.8 percent registered for the year ended February 2021.

The increase in Annual Headline inflation is mainly attributed to the Annual Food Crops and Related Items Inflation that increased to minus 0.9 percent for the year ending March 2021 compared to minus 4.3 percent recorded for the year ended February 2021.

This rise was mainly driven by Annual Inflation for Vegetables that recorded 0.6 percent for the year ending March 2021 compared to minus 4.7 percent recorded in February 2021.

In particular, the Annual Inflation for Vegetables cultivated for their fruit, increased to 2.5 percent for the year ending March 2021 compared to the minus 12.6 percent recorded for the year ended February 2021.

In addition, Annual Fruits Inflation increased to minus 0.8 percent for the year ending March 2021 compared to minus 3.3 percent recorded for the year ended February 2021.

Juliet Nakayenga, a senior statistician at the Uganda Bureau of Statistics items like smoked Nile perch, green cabbages, water melon, eggplant and bitter tomatoes, pears, mangoes, peas, tomatoes ,fresh vegetables like bitter tomato (Nakati), Bugga, leafy vegetables (Dodo),Cassava flour, Pineapples, Passion fruits are part of those that have increased.

Among those that have reduced in prices include, citrus fruit, fresh okra , fresh beans, oranges, Bamboo shoots( Malewa), Angara fish, Carrots, Ginger, Avocadoes, and Maize grains.

Analysis by geographical areas and income groups reveal that Arua registered the highest Annual Inflation of 7.3 percent driven by Annual Inflation for Food and non-alcoholic beverages Inflation. In addition, Annual inflation for Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels increased to minus 3.3 percent.

The second highest Inflation was registered in the basket of Kampala High Income that registered an Inflation of 4.9 percent, driven by Annual Inflation for Food and non-alcoholic beverages Inflation. In addition inflation for Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels increased to minus 1.6 percent

The least Annual Inflation was registered in Gulu at 2.0 percent. The low inflation in the Centre was due to the Annual Transport Inflation that declined to 23.3 Percent for the year ending March 2021 compared to 26.3 percent registered for the year ended February 2021.

Food prices rise as inflation hits 3.8%

By Edwin Muhumuza

Ugandans will have to pay more money for food following the general increase in prices countrywide.

This according to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics while releasing the consumer price index report.

According to the Director Macroeconomic Statistics, Aliziki Khauda Lubega, the Annual Headline Inflation for the year ending February 2021 is recorded at 3.8%; Compared to 3.7% registered for the year ended January 2021.

This was attributed to Annual Food crops and related items inflation that increased to -4.3% for the year ending February 2021 compared to -5.6% recorded for the year ended January 2021.

The increase in Annual Food Crops & Related Items was mainly driven by Annual inflation for Vegetables that recorded -4.7% for the year ending February compared to -7.4 recorded for the year ended January 2021;

Annual Inflation for Vegetables cultivated for their fruit, registered an increase of -12.6% for the year ending February 2021 compared to -17.2% recorded for the year ended January 2021.

However, Annual fruits Inflation decreased to -3.3% for the year ending February 2021 compared to -2.5% recorded for the year ended January 2021.

According to the senior statistician at the Uganda Bureau of Statistics Julie Nakayenga, those that have experienced an increase in prices include, peas, tomatoes, green pepper, cabbage, eggplants, green vegetables, Nile perch and sugar.

Relatedly those whose prices have reduced include of fruits and Matooke.

‘Price reductions have been registered with citrus fruits and tobacco in that category to include lemon, oranges, French beans, tobacco leaves, matooke and passion fruits’ Nakayenga noted.

The Annual Core Inflation increased to 5.6% compared to 5.5% in the same period due to other Goods Inflation specifically, the purchase of Second hand vehicles which increased to 21.9% compared to 14.7%. In addition, Sugar registered an increase of -5.0% compared to -9.4%.

However, the monthly Energy Fuel and Utilities Inflation decreased by 0.1% during February 2021 compared to 2.8% recorded in January 2021.

The decrease was attributed to monthly Solid Fuels Inflation that recorded a 0.2%, drop in February 2021, compared to 6.7% rise registered for the month of January 2021. In addition, the Monthly Liquid Gas Inflation further declined by 0.7% during the month of February 2021 from 0.3% drop recorded in January 2021.

Inflation at 3.6% as Uganda heads into elections

By Edwin Muhumuza

Uganda’s inflation has been recorded at 3.6 percent at the end of 2020 compared to the 3.7 percent registered for the year ended November 2020.

The decline is mainly attributed to Energy, Fuel and Utilities Inflation that decreased to minus 4.6 percent in December 2020 compared to minus 1.4 percent registered in November, according to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics during the release of the consumer price Index for December.

Specifically, Charcoal Inflation declined to minus 8.0 percent compared to minus 1 percent. In addition, Firewood Inflation declined to minus 14.6 percent compared to 3.3 percent in November.

According to Director of Macro Economic Statistics, Aliziki Lubega , the Annual Core Inflation increased to 5.9 percent in December compared to the 5.8 percent in November.

Specifically, Purchase of Second Hand Vehicles Inflation registered a 10 percent increase compared to 8.6 percent in November 2020 while Services Inflation registered 11.2 percent in December 2020 compared to 11.1 percent the previous month.

Geographically, the west Nile City of Arua registered the highest Annual Inflation of 7.3 percent in December 2020 lower than the 7.9 percent in November 2020.

This was driven by increased prices and costs to do with Restaurants and Hotels in the area. In addition, Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels Inflation increased to 0.8 percent in December 2020 compared to minus 1.9 percent registered for November 2020.

The second highest Inflation was registered in the basket of Kampala High Income that registered an Inflation of 4.4 percent with the main driver of the prices being Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages Inflation. Transport Inflation rose to 26.4 percent compared to 25.1 percent registered for November 2020.

The least Annual Inflation was registered in Mbale at 1.1 percent where the low inflation in the Centre was due to reduction and lower prices of Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages as well as a decline in Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels Inflation.

Relatedly, Prices of residential properties in Greater Kampala Metropolitan Area have registered a 9.7% increase compared to 1.2% in 2019 according to principal statistician Sam Kaisiromwe.

This is attributed the rising trend to prices of properties in Nakawa and Wakiso areas that increased from a negative 3.8 and negative 3.4 percent respectively in 2019 to 12.6 percent and 13.8 percent in 2020.

In addition, prices in Kampala and Makindye areas increased to 12.0 percent for the year 2020 from 7.2 registered in 2019. However prices in Kawempe and Rubaga areas declined from 5.0 percent in 2019 to a minus 1.5 percent in 2020.

Uganda’s inflation registered at 4.5%

By Edwin Muhumuza

Uganda’s inflation has been recorded at 4.5% from 4.6% last month.

While releasing the consumer price index report for the month of September, the principal statistician at the Uganda Bureau of Statistics, Sam Kaisiromwe , noted that the decline is attributed to a gradual reduction in prices of food stuffs.

‘The prices of food crops continue to go down and they have now reached to minus 6.2% for year ending September 2020 compared to minus 5.4 registered in August.’

Looking at food crops, vegetable inflation decreased to minus 3.7% compared to the rise in August when they were registered at 0.4%.

‘Still with food crops, inflation of fruits is seen to be going up a bit to minus 8.9 % in September compared to minus 12.3% in August’, he said.

At sectoral level, transport registered the highest inflation of 27.7% in September, followed by clothing and foot wear that registered 2.5% compared to 1.9% in August.

The least inflation was seen in food and non-alcoholic beverages that resisted 0.2% compared to 1.7% in August. Restaurants and Hotels registered 1.2% compared to 1.6% last month, and communication registered 1.3% compared to 1.4% in August.

Regionally, the basket of Kampala High Income recorded the highest inflation of 5.5% in September compared to 4.5% in August. This was followed by Kampala Middle income that registered 5.2% for September compared to 5.5% in August.

Gulu region and its surroundings registered the lowest inflation of 2.6% compared to 3.4% in August.In all regions transport inflation remains high according to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics.

Monthly, Month on Month inflation rose by 0.7% compared to 0.3% rise in August.

Some of the items that increased in prices include, cooking bananas, mangoes, taxi fares for shared short distances, citrus fruits, dried cassava, pumpkins, whole cassava and fish specifically Nile perch.

However during the month of September Maize flour prices went down, liquefied gas, round onions, cabbages, fresh beans, eggplants, bitter tomatoes and tomatoes also registered price reductions.

In the Residential Property Price Index, which measures the prices of houses within greater Kampala metropolitan area, different geographical areas contribute to the index .

Wakiso contributes 39.5% of the total stock of houses on sale, Kampala and Makindye around 23.7%,Kawempe and Rubaga around 23.3% and lastly Nakawa at 13.4% of the houses.

The results indicate that the index declined to 10.1% for Q1 compared to 10.5 in Q4 of the last financial year.

The decline was due to residential properties in Kampala and Makindye areas that declined to 6.5% for Q1 of 2020/21 compared to 25.2% registered in the previous quarter.However Nakawa prices increased to 26.4% in Q1 compared to 20.1% registered in Q4.

In addition Wakiso prices of houses also increased to 13.0% for the year ending Q1 of 2020/21 compared to 5.1% in the last quarter.

Inflation declines to 4.6%

By Edwin Muhumuza

Annual Headline Inflation for August 2020 has declined to 4.6% compared to 4.7% in July 2020.

It is largely due to Annual Energy Fuel Utilities (EFU) Inflation that decreased to 4.3% in August compared to 6.6% in July 2020.

According to the director of Macro economic statistics at the Uganda Bureau of Statistics, Aliziki Khauda , while highlighting the trends of Inflation across the country, on the different products, the decrease in EFU inflation was due to solid Fuels Inflation that decreased to 13.4% in August compared 20.6 % in July 2020.

Annual Energy, Fuels and Utilities (EFU) Inflation declined to 4.3% in August and this covers charcoal Inflation which individually declined to 13.6% in August compared to 20.9% in July.

The Annual Food Crops and related Items Inflation increased to -5.4% in August compared to -5.5% in July, while In that same period, fruit prices increased to -12.3% in August, and -12.6% in July.

On a month to month basis, those that have recorded a rise in prices include, Malewa, Matooke(bananas), mangoes, green pepper, cassava dry, chicken, fresh beans, milk, whole cassava and milk while those whose prices have reduced include, peas, okra, onions, maize flour and whole grain maize, according to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics.

The highest inflation was registered amongst the Kampala Middle income people, with 5.5% inflation in August compared to the 4.8% registered in July. Jinja and Masaka inflation was registered at 5.4% in August compared to 5.2% in July while Fort Portal registered 3.1%

The Monthly Headline Inflation for August 2020 rose by 0.3% compared to 0.1% rise recorded in July 2020, due to the Food Crops and Related Items Inflation that rose by 1.2% in August 2020, compared to minus 4.9% in July 2020.

Monthly Fruits Inflation increased by 4.6% in August 2020, compared to 3.7% drop for July. The Monthly Energy Fuel and Utilities Inflation dropped by 0.3% in August 2020 from the 1.0% drop recorded in July 2020. Monthly Core Inflation increased by 0.2% in Aug 2020, July was 0.9%.

It is worth noting that with the advent of the rainy season, food stuff prices like vegetables and Matooke have gone up while Maize and onion prices have reduced due to the bumper harvest according to Nakayenga Juliet, a statistician at the Bureau.

Uganda’s inflation hits 4.7%

By Edwin Muhumuza

Uganda’s annual headline inflation has been recorded at 4.7percent for the year ended July 2020 from 4.1 percent registered in June 2020.

This on account of an increase in annual core inflation that was recorded at 5.8percent in July compared to 4.9 percent in June which was mainly driven by services inflation specifically transport services inflation that increased to 47.3 percent in July from 34.2 percent in June.

According to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) Principal Statistician, Sam Kaisiromwe, the lifting of the lock down to allow cars and vehicles to resume domestic and long haul distance travel is testament to these results.

Relatedly, there was a reduction in consumer prices of food crops which registered a minus 5.8 percent in July compared to minus 5.0 percent in June.

Food crop prices have decreased for the second month running.

The decline is attributed to annual vegetable inflation that declined however fruits inflation increased, in other wards fruits prices are still going down but the rate at which they are going down have reduced in this month compared to last month, he added.

This trend was mainly driven by reduction in prices of vegetables such as green pepper, eggplants, tomatoes, round onions and green cabbage. Others were fresh beans, banana-standard, Irish potatoes, beans, sugarcane, tomato ketchup and whole cassava.

However, those that increased include, bus fares, taxi fares for medium distance while food items like water melon, ice cream, and whole grain maize increased in price.

In the Energy Fuel and Utilities sector, inflation declined to 6.6 percent for the year ended July 2020 compared to 8.3percent for the year ended June 2020.The decrease is mainly due prices of solid fuels mainly charcoal which has declined to 21.0percent from 26.4 percent. Additionally prices of firewood declined.

It is however noteworthy that annual prices of liquid fuels specifically petrol increased from a minus 7.4percent to minus 6.4 percent while monthly liquid energy fuels increased by 0.4 percent in July compared to 0.5 percent rise in June.

In the health sector, a combination of medical products, appliances and equipment, out- patient services and hospital services registered a decrease to 3.1 percent from 3.2 percent, but hospital services specifically registered a 4.1 percent rise from 3.7 percent.

Analysis by geographical areas and income groups revealed that Jinja city registered the highest inflation of 5.6 percent followed by Kampala High Income and Masaka centers at 5.2 percent. The main driver was transport, food and non-alcoholic beverages which saw an increase in prices.

The least annual inflation was registered in Mbale at 2.8 percent which was due to decrease in prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages coupled with a reduction in prices of clothing and footwear

Inflation subsides to 1.8% in April

By Edwin Muhumuza

Uganda’s inflation has dropped to 1.8% in the month of April  compared to  2% registered in the previous month of March.

The drop is attributed to reduction in prices of food crops especially fruits such as oranges. Others  include  maize flour, sugar, milk, and simsim.

According to the Uganda Bureau of Statistics,principal statistician,Vincent Musoke,a drop in  inflation does not mean prices have come down but rather the speed at which prices are rising is still slow. Musoke, clarifies that unless the drop is down into negatives then that is when you expect prices to come down.

‘’However it should be noted that this is a general measure .You find that some products, their prices come up while the others come down. When you put them together you get the correct figure of the annual inflation.’’

Uganda continues to grapple with increasing prices of some essential products amid proposed tax increases. Among them include, all types of fuel, cement, construction materials, spirits, social services and foods like Rice, Matooke, Onions, and Apples.

According to the Uganda Bureau of statistics,this trend will sharply determine the public’s consumption behaviour.

During the release of the consumer price index for the year ended April 2018,it was also noted that Arua registered the highest annual inflation of 3.9% though lower than 4.8% recorded for the year ended March 2018.The rise was mainly driven by annual inflation for housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels .The second highest was Fort Portal,followed by Kampala High Income and then Mbale.

Economic Outlook

The growth outlook for 2018 is positive. Rebounding investment activity and healthy domestic demand fueled by accommodative monetary policy, are set to underpin GDP growth this year. In the medium term, economic activity should be buttressed by the sustained expansion of the agriculture sector and planned government investments in oil and gas production. Focus Economics panelists project growth of 5.7% in 2018, which is up 0.3 percentage points from last month’s forecast, and 5.9% in 2019.