Inflation in Nigeria continues to surge as the consumer price index (CPI) reached 22.41 percent in May 2023, marking the fifth consecutive monthly increase. This data was revealed in the latest CPI report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Thursday.
Compared to the previous month, where the inflation rate stood at 22.22 percent, the May figure reflects a slight increase of 0.19 percentage points. Furthermore, on a year-on-year basis, the inflation rate for May 2023 was 4.70 percentage points higher than the rate recorded in May 2022, which stood at 17.71 percent.
The NBS report highlights the impact of the recent removal of petrol subsidies, as Nigerians grapple with the consequences. This removal has played a significant role in the continued rise of the country’s inflation rate.
In May 2023, the average general price level experienced a marginal increase of 0.03 percent compared to April 2023, according to the Bureau’s findings.
The report also sheds light on food inflation, indicating a substantial rise. The food inflation rate for May 2023 stood at 24.82 percent on a year-on-year basis, marking a significant increase of 5.33 percent compared to May 2022 when it was 19.50 percent.
The surge in food inflation can be attributed to the rising prices of oil and fat, yam and other tubers, bread and cereals, fish, potatoes, fruits, meat, vegetable, and spirits.
On a month-on-month basis, the food inflation rate in May 2023 rose by 2.19 percent, a slight increase of 0.06 percent compared to April 2023, which recorded a rate of 2.13 percent.
Over the twelve-month period ending in May 2023, the average annual rate of food inflation increased by 4.97 percent points, reaching 23.65 percent. This represents a significant rise from the average annual rate of change recorded in May 2022, which was 18.68 percent.
Analyzing food inflation on a regional basis, Ondo, Kogi, and Rivers recorded the highest rates at 25.84 percent, 25.70 percent, and 25.02 percent, respectively. Conversely, Taraba, Sokoto, and Plateau experienced the slowest rise in headline inflation, with rates of 19.55 percent, 19.56 percent, and 19.89 percent, respectively.
The rising inflation rates in Nigeria pose significant challenges for the country’s economy, as they erode purchasing power and negatively affect the standard of living for many Nigerians. The government faces the pressing task of implementing effective measures to curb inflation and stabilize prices, particularly in the food sector, which has a direct impact on the daily lives of the population.
These latest inflation figures underscore the need for proactive and comprehensive policies to address the underlying causes of inflation, promote price stability, and stimulate sustainable economic growth in Nigeria.