Egypt’s annual urban consumer price inflation increased to 14.4 per cent in February from 12.7 per cent in January, the official statistics agency, CAPMAS said on Sunday.
CAPMAS said in Cairo that prices in the transport sector rose 32 per cent while food and beverage prices increased 15.3 per cent year-on-year.
The agency said accommodation, water, electricity, gas and fuel sectors’ prices rose by 15.2 per cent while the education sector’s prices increased by 15.1 per cent.
Inflation had cooled to 12 per cent in December after an increase in fuel, electricity and transportation prices last year had sent the rate up to a high of 17.7 percent in October.
Egypt has implemented a series of tough austerity measures to help meet the terms of a12 billion dollars IMF loan programme it signed in late 2016.
“It’s higher than what we had expected,’’ Allen Sandeep, Head of Research at Naeem Brokerage in Cairo said.
The Central Bank, which is targeting inflation of 13 per cent plus or minus 3 percentage points, made a surprise cut of its overnight interest rates last month.
It cited a strong drop in inflation and an improvement in other macro-economic indicators.
“In our view, this should put the brakes on monetary easing for now,’’ Sandeep said.
The bank’s monetary policy committee will meet on March 28 to decide on interest rates.