By Stelios Orphanides
The harmonised consumer price index rose last month an annual 0.5 per cent mainly as the island’s hospitality industry passes energy price increases to consumers as it operates on full capacity, the statistical service said.
From January to August, the harmonised annual inflation rate was 1 per cent, Cystat said in a statement on its website on Tuesday. Compared with the month before, consumer prices rose 1 per cent in August.
Energy prices rose last month 6 per cent compared with August 2016 and services rose 2.1 per cent, Cystat said. This was offset by a 2.9 per cent drop in food, alcoholic beverages and tobacco prices and a 1.1 per cent reduction of industrial product prices excluding fuel.
In August, hotels and restaurants increased their prices on average 3.1 per cent compared with the respective month of 2016, even as prices in the sub-categories of food and non-alcoholic beverages, alcoholic beverages and tobacco and equipment and cleaning and furnishings, household equipment and routine fell 2.8 per cent, 3.3 per cent and 2.4 per cent respectively. Prices in the subcategories of transport and housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels rose 4.5 per cent and 4.7 per cent.