By Rjay Zuriaga Castor
Inflation in Western Visayas increased to 6.6 percent in September this year, continuing the trend after the August inflation ended the five months of steady decline in the region.
The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported that the uptrend is on the back of the higher annual increase in the heavily weighted index of food and non-alcoholic beverages.
Inflation in food and non-alcoholic beverages is at 10.5 percent in September, from 8.7 percent in August.
Specifically, PSA noted that food inflation in Western Visayas during September 2023 went up to 10.8 percent, from 9.0 percent in August.
The acceleration of food inflation last month was mainly due to the higher inflation for meat and other parts of slaughtered land animals, which rose to 6.9 percent during the month from a mere 0.6 percent in the previous month.
The PSA also recorded an increase in the inflation in the bottom 30 percent income households in the region, rising to 7.9 percent in September from 7.1 percent in August.
The increase is also attributed to the higher annual growth in the indices of food and non-alcoholic beverages, transport, and recreation, sport, and culture.
Among the six provinces in Western Visayas, five recorded accelerated inflation rates in September this year. Negros Occidental had the highest monthly inflation rate at 7.6 percent, while the island province of Guimaras had the lowest at 5.2 percent.
Iloilo City and Bacolod City also observed an uptrend in inflation rates in September from August. Iloilo City recorded 6.3 percent from 5.5 percent in August 2023, while Bacolod City’s inflation rose to 6.4 percent during the month, from 5.7 percent in the previous month.
The country’s headline inflation also jumped to 6.1 percent in September from 5.3 percent in August.