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Pakistan records highest ever weekly inflation in decades amid calamitous floods

Islamabad [Pakistan], September 3 (ANI): Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Friday stated that the inflation measured by the Sensitive Price Index (SPI) rose steeply in the previous week climbing to a record 45.5 per cent year-on-year in September, the highest level in a decade.

PBS stated that the SPI-based inflation rate jumped to 1.31 per cent during the previous week compared to last week, due to a surge in prices of vegetables, as the country faces the brunt of the catastrophic floods which have affected over 33 million lives, reported Geo news.

It was also the third consecutive week that the inflation rate constantly increased, largely due to supply chain disruption amid floods that have sent the price of essential goods skyrocketing.

The latest data showed that the average prices of 31 items essential items, onions, tomatoes, eggs and other items rose during the outgoing week. Prices of three items, including vegetable ghee, have declined. Meanwhile, the rates for 17 essential goods remained unchanged, reported Geo news.

The report said that the increase was observed in the prices of food items including onions 42.17 per cent, tomatoes 13.25 per cent, pulse moong (Washed) 7.94 per cent, potatoes 6.97 per cent, Eggs 3.84 per cent, Chicken 3.25 per cent, Wheat flour 1.49 per cent.

The non-food items that witnessed an increase in prices included LPG 4.45 percent, diesel 1.19 percent and petrol 0.88 percent.

The combined income group index went up from 219.97 points during the week that ended on September 1 to 222.85 points in the week under review.

The SPI for the lowest income group increased by 1.63 per cent compared to the previous week. The index for the group stood at 229.15 points against 225.48 points in the previous week, reported Geo news.

Pakistan is grappling with a worse economic crisis, and the soaring prices of vegetables and food products in the country facing devastating floods have put huge pressure on the masses as they are deprived of basic necessities amid the disruption of agricultural produce and supply chains.

The entire country is facing a shortage of vegetables and the prices have skyrocketed.

According to satellite images from the European Space Agency (ESA), more than one-third of Pakistan is underwater amid its worst floods in history.

As deadly floodwaters threaten to create secondary disasters, food is in short supply after water covered millions of acres of crops and wiped out hundreds of thousands of livestock.

More than 1,100 people have died from the floods since mid-June, nearly 400 of them children, while millions have been displaced, according to Pakistan’s National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said that the floods were “the worst in the country’s history” and estimated the calamity had caused more than USD 10 billion in damages to infrastructure, homes and farms.

More than 33 million people have been affected, or about 15 per cent of the population, according to Pakistan’s climate change minister Sherry Rehman. More than 1 million homes have been damaged or destroyed, while at least 5,000 kilometers of roads have been damaged, according to the NDMA.

Floods have impacted 2 million acres of crops and killed more than 794,000 heads of livestock across Pakistan, according to a situation report from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

More than 800 health facilities have been damaged in the country, of which 180 are completely damaged, leaving millions of people lacking access to health care and medical treatment, as reported in many affected districts, according to WHO.

Pakistan’s monsoon season usually brings heavy downpours, but this year’s has been the wettest since records began in 1961, according to the Pakistan Meteorological Department. (ANI)

This report is auto-generated from ANI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

Source: The Print

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