High food prices raise inflation in May by 4.19% year-on-year: Commerce Ministry

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BANGKOK, June 1 – Thailand’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) in May was 112.39, 4.19 per cent higher than during the same period last year, according to the Commerce Ministry.

Permanent Secretary for Commerce Yanyong Puangrach said the one-year CPI rise was caused by an 8.38 per cent increase in the prices of food and beverages but was not as high as projected and is normal for the current economic condition.

Compared to the previous month, the CPI in May rose 0.34 per cent. Inflation from January-May increased 3.45 per cent on average, compared to the same period last year.

Mr Yanyong said it reflected that the Thai economy is stabilising and that consumers remain confident regarding the prices of goods. The ministry is confident that the inflation rate this year will stay around 3.2-3.7 per cent as projected despite risk factors such as global oil prices, interest rates and volatile currency exchange.

Mr Yangyong said the ministry will also monitor prices of prepared food and made-to-order menus, as well as rice and curry dishes as more middle-class people prefer eating out with these kinds of meals rather than cooking at home.

The Internal Trade Department will discuss with food court operators in department stores to have special priced menus for prepared foods and will arrange “Blue Flag” campaign to sell consumers goods at prices lower than in the market. The department will also talk to poultry producers to reduce egg prices, he said. (MCOT online news)