Weaker RON refuels inflation in Romania

Sorin Melenciuc 13/02/2019 | 10:44

Romania’s annual inflation rate slightly increased to 3.32 percent in January, from 3.27 percent in December, as RON’s depreciation refueled price increases in imported goods and some services.

In May and June 2018, Romania posted the biggest annual inflation rate since February 2013, of 5.4 percent but the consumer prices index declined during the summer and autumn.

Compared with January 2018, the prices of food products rose by 3.8 percent on average, while non-food products increased by 3.3 percent. The prices of services went up by 2.7 percent, National Institute of Statistics (INS) data show.

Compared with December 2018, consumer prices in Romania rose by 0.83 percent, the highest rate in 12 months, as food prices increased by 1.3 percent, non-food products’ prices went up by 0.6 percent, and services’ prices rose by 0.6 percent.

The biggest price increases compared with December were recorded for potatoes (10 percent) and fresh fruits (3.9 percent), while the biggest monthly price decreases were registered for airline tickets (-3.5 percent).

In January, the Romanian currency lost almost 2 percent of its value against the EUR pushing up prices in telephone services (+1 percent) or imported food’s prices – and during winter, most food in Romania is imported.

The price of fuels rose by 0.6 percent compared with December 2018.

The central bank had an inflation estimate of 3 percent for December 2019.

Romania was the country with the highest annual inflation rate among the European Union member states for most of last year in terms of inflation measured by Harmonised Indices of Consumer Prices (HICP), according to Eurostat.

The HICP index used by Eurostat measure price with a unified basket of consumer products and services for the 28 EU member states.

But the Romanian basket of consumer products and services, which includes a higher percentage of food products (31.9 percent of total basket), shows a different picture.

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