Bulgaria annual inflation reaches new 14-year high of 14.4% in April

Bulgaria’s annual consumer price index (CPI) recorded 14.4 per cent inflation in April 2022, up from 12.4 per cent a month earlier, data released by the National Statistical Institute (NSI) on May 17 showed.

This was the highest year-on-year increase in consumer prices since July 2008, when it was 14.5 per cent, with the sharp increase recorded in the past year showing no sign of abating. In April 2021, year-on-year CPI inflation was two per cent.

Monthly inflation in April was 2.5 per cent, compared to 2.2 per cent recorded in March. This was the highest monthly inflation recorded in Bulgaria since August 2007, when the figure was 3.1 per cent.

Food prices in April were 4.4 per cent higher compared to the previous month, while non-food prices rose by 2.2 per cent and services prices increased by 0.4 per cent.

Compared to April 2021, food prices were 20.7 per cent higher, while non-food and services prices rose by 13.6 per cent and 7.6 per cent, respectively.

The harmonised CPI figure, calculated by NSI for comparison with European Union data, rose by 2.1 per cent on a monthly basis in April, while the annual harmonised CPI inflation was 12.1 per cent.

This was the highest year-on-year increase in the harmonised CPI since July 2008, when the figure was 14.4 per cent. The monthly harmonised CPI inflation was the highest since August 2007, when the figure was 2.2 per cent.

Food and beverage prices were 20.2 per cent higher, on an annual basis, while the price of utilities and housing increased by 15.2 per cent and transportation costs were 22.6 per cent higher compared to April 2021. The three categories account for about 48.5 per cent of the harmonised CPI basket.

For the first time in two years, since the start of the start of Covid-19 pandemic in Bulgaria in March 2020, NSI made no mention of its ability to collect data being impaired and having to extrapolate statistical data.

(Consumer price index changes since April 2021. Bars illustrate the annual CPI and lines show the monthly CPI. Graphic: NSI)

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