The Kingdom’s inflation rate fell month-on-month in November for the first time all year, dropping 0.7 per cent from October, according to National Institute of Statistics data.
However, year-on-year inflation in November increased 5.7 per cent, the NIS reported.
“We see that we got a bigger supply of fish and meat, and at the same time a decline in the price of gasoline,” NIS official Sim Ly said, explaining the incremental dip last month. He and other experts noted the damage done to Cambodia’s agriculture sector by this year’s flooding – the worst in a decade – but emphasised that prices were not significantly impacted.
While milled rice prices did register small gains, Sim Ly said many foods saw price declines. The cost of pork fell 2.6 per cent, according to NIS, while chicken and fresh fish fell 3.4 per cent and 5.4 per cent, respectively.
At the same time, gasoline slipped 2 per cent, while transport costs were off 1.7 per cent. Sim Ly estimated that with month to month inflation rates averaging between 5 and 6 per cent, the annual rate would settle at 5.7 per cent for 2011.
University of Cambodia business and economics lecturer Chheng Kimlong agreed with Sim Ly, saying inflation would not climb higher than that 5.7 per cent figure. That was in line with his own projection of a below 6 per cent increase for the year, he said.
“It means that our economy has performed very well,” he said. He pointed also to the fact that, despite the Kingdom’s heavily import-dependent economy, the inflation rate has remained manageable.
Chheng Kimlong also said that Cambodia continues to produce more of the products it needs, therefore easing that dependence on imports.
“Of course, we don’t get too much of an impact on our economy from imported products because, at the same time, we can produce more for local consumption,” he said.