The growth of consumer prices in Ukraine in 2017 increased to 13.7%, which is 1.3% higher than the figure observed in 2016. However, it is still considerably lower than in the previous years. Inflation of 43.3% was recorded in 2015, whereas in 2014 it was 24.9%, the State Statistics Service of Ukraine informed, reported by Interfax-Ukraine.
What concerns monthly levels of inflation observed in the last months of 2017 – prices rose by 1% in December, by 0.9% in November and 1.2% in the month of October. The service reported that the average annual inflation in 2017 (January-December to January-December of 2016) increased to 14.4% from 13.9% in the previous year.
Prices for food and non-alcoholic beverages in the consumer market in December increased by 1.5%. The highest increase was observed in the vegetable and eggs segments (by 7.1% and 6.8% respectively). Prices for milk and dairy products, butter, lard, fruits, bread, beef and pasta increased by 4.0%-1.6%, whereas prices for buckwheat, sugar, poultry, and fish fell by 5.4%-0.5%. Prices for alcoholic drinks and tobacco products went up by 0.6%.
The growth in prices (tariffs) for housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels by 0.3% was attributed mainly to the rise in the cost of housing maintenance and repairs by 1.1%, heating tariffs by 0.9%. At the same time, tariffs for water supply and sewerage depreciated by 1.2%, hot water by 0.1%. The increase in cost of transportation in general by 1.8% was mainly due to the rise in prices for fuels and by 2.5%, as well as the increase in road transport fares by 1.5%.
The Ukrainian government and the National Bank of Ukraine initially forecast a slowdown in consumer price growth to 8-8.1% in 2017. However, during the year they worsened their forecasts. In particular, the government corrected its inflation forecast from 8% to 11.2%, and the National Bank's inflation forecast given in late October was 12.2% instead of the 9.1% predicted earlier. Moreover, the government has corrected its forecast regarding the level of inflation in 2018 – it is now expected at 7.3% instead of the initially forecast figure of 6%. While preparing the state budget for 2018, the Cabinet of Ministers also worsened the inflation forecast for 2018 from 7% to 9%.