Cost of living was up in September

By Benjamin Flowers

Keeping with the trend since the start of 2017, new statistics show that the cost of living during the month of September was higher than it was last year.
The Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) released its Consumer Price Index (CPI) on Wednesday, showing that Belizeans paid an average of 70 cents more for goods and services this year than they did in September 2016.

The SIB noted that the Transport Index was the major driver behind the higher cost of living, as a combination of international airfares, local bus fares and an increased price of fuel caused the prices to go up by 6.6 percent.

Belizeans also paid an average of 0.9 percent more for commodities under the Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & other Fuels index, with home rental prices being the key contributor.

“This was almost entirely attributable to an increase in rental prices in Dangriga, as virtually all other municipalities saw some decreases in rent compared to last September,” the SIB said.

Lower prices on selected food items caused an overall 1.1 percent decrease in the Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages category. Those items include including ground beef, beef steak, pigtail, whole chickens, flour, eggs, and milk recorded average price decreases.

By municipality, Dangriga had the highest rate of inflation, 2.3 percent, while Orange Walk Town had the lowest, where prices actually went down by 0.8 percent.

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