MAPUTO, The inflation rate in Mozambique in December, based on consumer price indices for the country’s three biggest cities — Maputo, Nampula and Beira, was 1.1 per cent, according to the latest data from the National Statistics Institute (INE).

This brings inflation for the whole of 2017 to 5.65 per cent, a dramatic improvement from 2016 when inflation was 23.67 per cent. The trend over the year was similar to the past with rising prices in the early part of the year from January to April and prices falling in the middle of the year from May to September as harvests come in. Prices resumed an upward trend in the last four months of the year.

The main price rises in December were for tomatoes (12.1 per cent), onions (20.6 per cent), beer (6.1 per cent), coconuts (9.9 per cent), frozen fish (2.6 per cent), and medical consultations (24.9 per cent).

For the full year, the main price increases were for petrol, bread, charcoal, beer, coconuts, restaurant meals and frozen fish. These accounted for 3.88 per cent of the total inflation of 5.65 per cent.

The December inflation was not the same in the three cities. It was highest in Nampula (1.24 per cent), while the inflation rate in Maputo was 1.15 per cent, and in Beira only 0.74 per cent.