CORE inflation in Singapore rose to 1.9 per cent in July, although the consumer price index (CPI) for all items remained unchanged from the previous month, according to the latest figures from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI).
This is because steeper electricity and gas prices were offset by private road transport costs and lower services inflation, they said in a joint statement yesterday.
Looking ahead, however, imported inflation is likely to rise with an uptick in global oil prices since the start of 2018. Global food commodity costs are also projected to increase as demand strengthens.
Domestic sources of inflation are expected to grow too, alongside a faster pace of wage growth and pickup in domestic demand.
However, the authorities added: “The extent of consumer price increases will remain moderate, as retail rents have stayed relatively subdued and firms' pricing power may be constrained by market competition.”
The cost of living has been a prime concern among Singaporeans, with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong acknowledging citizens' worries in his National Day Rally speech last Sunday.
Price increases, the concerns of young families and those caring for both children and elderly parents, as well as lifestyle changes, are among reasons that people are feeling the pinch, he added, pledging that the Government will do its part to ease concerns.
According to the MAS and MTI, electricity and gas prices spiked 12.7 per cent in July - up from a 3.7 per cent increase the month before - due to an upward revision of electricity tariffs after a pick-up in global oil prices.