The Nigeria’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased to 17.71 per cent in May due to a hike in prices of gas, fuel, bread and cereal, said the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
According to the NBS inflation report yesterday, the figure was 0.22% lower than the figure in May 2021 which was 17.93.
However, the headline inflation in May 2022 rose by 1.78%, a 0.02% increase from the 1.76% in April.
The composite food index rose to 19.50% in one year, dropping by 2.78% from 22.28% in May 2021.
The report said: “This rise in the food index was caused by increases in prices of bread and cereals, food products, potatoes, yam and other tubers, wine, fish, meat, and oils. On a month-on-month basis, the food sub-index increased to 2.01% in May 2022, up by 0.01% points from 2% recorded in April 2022.”
It said the highest increases were recorded in prices of gas, liquid fuel, garment, solid fuel, cleaning, repair and hire of clothing and passenger transport by road.
While the urban inflation rate increased to 18.24%, it dropped by 0.27% from what it was in 18.51% in May 2021. The rural inflation also rose to 17.21%, a 0.15% decline compared to 17.36% in May 2021.
Commenting on the latest inflation raise, the National Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA), warned that the inflation may soon exceed 18%, a similar figure reached in March 2021, if the federal government fails to ensure food security.
The acting Director-General of NACCIMA, Mr Opeyemi Alaran, said Nigeria is prone to external shocks and with the sign of the Russia-Ukraine war not ending soon, 2022 would beat the highest CPI recorded in Nigeria.
He said: “We need to look seriously into issues that affect food security so that if you reduce the rising cost of food, then inflation is likely going to reduce.
“We have been warning that we are dangerously close to the highest ever inflation we had, which is 18.17%, now the inflation is 17.71% so by June, if nothing urgent is done, we are likely to exceed 18.17. So, we should tackle food insecurity so that the food index can fall to reduce inflation,” Alaran advised.