Saudi inflation rate stabilizes in Jan at 1.2%

RIYADH (Agencies): Inflation in Saudi Arabia remained at 1.2 percent in January, despite a rise in transport and food costs, according to the Kingdom’s General Authority of Statistics, also known as GASTAT.
The rate is the same as December 2021.
In its report, GASTAT said the 1.2 percent growth in the general consumer price index, or CPI, “resulted from higher prices of transport (+4.9 percent) and food and beverages prices (+2.0 percent).”
In the food and beverages group – which has a 19 percent weighting in the general CPI — growth in food prices accelerated to 2.1 percent from 1.1 percent in December.
This included:
Meat prices: 0.5 percent from 0.1 percent.
Vegetables: 10 percent from 6.3 percent.
Milk: 5.2 percent from 2.1 percent.
Fish and seafood: 2.7 from 0.9 percent.
Fruit: 2.7 percent from 0.6 percent.
Growth in transportation prices — which has a 13 percent weighting in the general CPI – slowed to 4.9 percent from 7.2 percent in December.
Education increased from 4.8 percent to 6.3 percent, while restaurant and hotels growth went from 1.8 percent to 2.1 percent.
On a month-on-month basis, food and beverages prices grew by 0.4 percent compared to a decline of 0.7 percent in December. Prices for furnishings, household equipment and maintenance — a 7 percent weighting in the overall index — rose 0.5 percent compared to a decline of 0.2 percent in December.
Earlier this week the Saudi Central Bank, also known as SAMA, said it projected the rate of inflation in Saudi Arabia to accelerate slightly in the first quarter of 2022 on a year-on-year basis.
The forecast should be justified by “an ongoing improvement in domestic demand and a rise in the level of inflation globally,” SAMA noted.