Ghana’s inflation rate increased to 23.6 percent in April, up from 19.4 percent in March. The new mark is the highest since January 2004.
This was revealed by Ghana’s Government Statistician, Samuel Kobina Annim, who stated that imported items surpassed locally produced items for the first time in 29 months.
The war in Ukraine and Indonesia’s ban on palm oil exports increased the cost of imported goods such as cooking oil and gasoline, resulting in headline inflation that exceeded the country’s central bank’s target band of 6% to 10%.
Food prices increased by 26.6 percent over the previous month, nearly doubling the category’s 12-month average of 13.5 percent. Cereal prices were a major contributor, continuing a trend that began with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.
Meanwhile, Ghana’s central government has been cutting spending in order to control the ongoing price rise and boost the economy.
Transportation costs, which include fuel prices, increased the most, rising to 33.5 percent from 17.4 percent in March. Diesel prices alone increased by 90.9 percent.
Ghana’s central bank raised its main lending rate by a record 250 basis points in March, fearing that runaway inflation, compounded by a depreciating local currency and mounting national debt, could ignite a full-blown economic crisis.
The central bank’s monetary policy committee will meet from May 18 to discuss further adjustments.