Posted: Thursday, April 29, 2021. 8:30 am CST.
By Aaron Humes: Inflation in prices has gone up 1.5 percent compared to last March among all items Belizeans bought last month, but only 0.02 percent from February, according to the Statistical Institute of Belize.
Generally, Belizeans are paying more for food items, Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), home rentals and personal care products and less for hotel accommodations and men’s and women’s footwear.
The SIB says food prices have trended steadily upward since last April and have risen 4.3 percent over last March, especially among fresh produce which rose 10 percent and for some items (lettuce, onions, cabbages, potatoes, limes, and pineapples, red kidney beans, natural milk, pig tail and whole chickens) by as much as 25 percent. Lower prices were recorded for items suc as tomatoes, watermelons, sweet peppers and ground beef.
The steady increases in fuel and lubricant prices caused average prices to rise by 4.4 percent, particularly diesel and butane, and an overall rise by 2.6 percent with lower costs for international airfares as well as premium and regular fuels. Nonetheless, at the pump, the average price per gallon of diesel rose by almost $1 from $9.36 in March 2020 to $10.20 in March 2021. Premium gasoline was down by $0.63 compared to March of last year, from $11.12 to $10.49, while regular gasoline decreased by $0.13 from $10.33 to $10.20.
LPG prices rose 13.5 percent. The average cost of a hundred-pound cylinder of LPG was up by more than $13, from $98.41 in March 2020 to $111.68 in March 2021. Additionally, home rentals costs were up by 0.2 percent, as higher prices were recorded in the municipalities of San Ignacio/ Santa Elena and Belmopan.
Belizeans are also paying more for some hygiene products, but also for pet care and games, toys and hobbies, though substantially less for hotel accommodations as that industry continues to recover from COVID-19.
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