CAIRO, Oct 10 (Aswat Masriya) - Egypt's annual inflation rate dropped to 14.6 per cent in September down from 16.4 per cent in August, state statistics agency said on Monday.
The drop, happening for the first time since March, comes amid string of price increases and speculations over floating of pound ahead of finalising a $12 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund.
Meanwhile, the annual urban consumer rate eased to 14.1 per cent in September compared to 15.5 per cent in August, according to the state-run Central Agency for Public Mobilisation and Statistics (CAPMAS) report.
On a monthly basis, the general index of consumer prices rose by 1.3 per cent from the previous month.
The agency attributed the rise mainly to the increase in prices of poultry and meat by 1.8 per cent, dairy products by 3.1 per cent and fruits by 2.1 per cent.
The rise in inflation was also driven by the government’s decision to increase the price of cigarettes by 14.8 per cent during August.
Some products have registered a drop in their prices during September as vegetables prices went down by 0.4 per cent and fish slipped by 0.9 per cent.
Moody's Investors Services said late in September that Egypt's inflation rates are expected to "remain elevated" in the upcoming fiscal year as plans to devalue the pound and introduce subsidy fuel reforms loom.
The cash-strapped Egyptian government is currently facing the consequences of years of political turmoil triggered by the 2011 Uprising that toppled former president Hosni Mubarak, halving the country’s foreign reserves and scaring away tourists and investors.