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Nigeria inflation surges to 33-month high

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Nigeria’s inflation rate has climbed to a 33-month high, as it rose further to 16.47% in January 2021 from 15.75% in December 2020, the latest figures published by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) have shown.

The report published on the website of the bureau shows that food inflation rose to 20.57% in January 2021 from 19.56% in the previous month, while core inflation jumped to 11.85% in January 2021 from 11.37% in December 2020.

The latest spike marks the 17th consecutive month of rising inflation in Nigeria.

The report suggested that the increase in food inflation was caused by increases in prices of bread and cereals, potatoes, yam and other tubers, meat, fruits, vegetables, F=fish, and oils, and fats.

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The last time Nigeria witnessed such a surge in the prices of food items was in July 2008 when food inflation rose to 12.9%.

“In January 2021, food inflation on a year on year basis was highest in Kogi (26.64%), Oyo (23.69%) and
River (23.49%), while Ondo (17.20%), Abuja (16.73%) and Bauchi (16.37%) recorded the slowest rise,” the report said.

“On month on month basis, however, January 2021 food inflation was highest in Oyo (4.47%), Lagos (3.86%)
and River (3.11%), while Akwa Ibom (0.25%) and Bayelsa (0.13%) recorded the slowest rise with Edo
recording price deflation or negative inflation (general decrease in the general price level of food or a
negative food inflation rate),” it added.

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The country’s inflation has been on the rise since the country shut its land borders. The situation became worse due to the coronavirus pandemic that has affected the global economy. The borders were opened in December 2020 more than a year after closing its land frontiers to crack down on smuggling.

The economy is yet to recover from the impacts of coronavirus and the plunge in crude prices, with the country currently in recession.

In the report, the composite food index rose to 18.30% percent in October 2020 compared to 17.38% percent in September 2020.

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