KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 23 ― Malaysia’s inflation rate increased 3.1 per cent from January to August this year, in line with market expectations of 3.2 per cent for 2022.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed attributed the rise to solid domestic demand, elevated commodity prices, and disruptions to the global supply chain.
For August 2022, the inflation rate rose 4.7 per cent compared to 4.4 per cent in July.
“The inflation rate in Malaysia is one of the lowest in the world. The August inflation rate in the eurozone was 9.1 per cent, the United States (8.3 per cent), Thailand (7.9 per cent), Philippines (6.3 per cent), and the Republic of Korea (5.7 per cent).
“The lower inflation rate in Malaysia is due to efforts from the Keluarga Malaysia government that has provided the biggest subsidy ever recorded in the history of the country,” he said in a statement today.
On a month-on-month basis, August inflation was up 0.2 per cent compared to a rise of 0.4 per cent in July.
Mustapa reiterated that the measures taken by the government have managed to control inflation in the country and that such measures will continue, especially via the Special Task Force on Jihad Against Inflation.
He said the Economic Planning Unit and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industries (MAFI) will implement a study to identify “quick win” measures to overcome the challenges of food security in the country.
The study is expected to be completed in three months.
“MAFI is also taking the lead in a study that will strengthen the food security ecosystem in the long term that will be comprehensive and provide a roadmap for the next ten years.
“Efforts taken by the government have resulted in the price stabilisation of essential food items like cooking oil, chicken, and eggs, which previously had seen high prices,” he added.
From January to August, non-alcoholic food and beverage (5.1 per cent), transport (4.5 per cent) and restaurants and hotels (4.0 per cent) were among the categories that posted the highest increases in price.
The rise in non-alcoholic food and beverage was attributed to the higher prices in the subgroups of meat (9.2 per cent), followed by milk, cheese, and eggs (7.3 per cent), while transport’s rise of 4.5 per cent was due to the increase in the price of Brent crude of 58.4 per cent in the eight-month period.
The category of restaurants and hotels saw a rise of 4.0 per cent during the period compared to a rise of 0.2 per cent in the previous corresponding period.
In August, non-alcoholic food and beverage rose 7.2 per cent.
Nevertheless, some categories of food saw a reduction in prices compared to July, such as chicken, which went down 3.8 per cent, siakap fish ( minus 2.4 per cent), and vegetables such as cucumber (minus 4.6 per cent), and round cabbage (minus 2.6 per cent). ― Bernama