ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Ethiopia’s annual inflation rate surged to 25.0 percent in March, from 16.5 percent a month earlier, as food and fuel prices rallied, the statistics agency said on Friday.
“This increase in the general consumer price index is attributed to the rise observed in the indices of food 25.5 percent … house rents, construction materials, water and fuel and power by 23.1 percent,” the Central Statistical Agency said in a statement.
Ethiopia has imposed price ceilings on more than a dozen commodities including some essential foodstuffs. Food accounts for just over 57 percent of the basket used to measure the inflation rate.
Government officials have accused traders of artificially inflating food prices on the back of higher global prices and a September devaluation of the birr currency.
Ethiopia is grappling with rising inflation like other countries in Africa, including Uganda where spiralling food and fuel prices have led to protests.
On Thursday the World Bank warned that higher global food and energy prices were affecting a larger swathe of developing countries than at the beginning of the year, threatening to push more people into poverty.