October 20, 2011 / 11:11 AM / 8 years ago

Qatar Sept inflation at fresh high of 2.2 pct

* Inflation up from 2.1 pct y/y in Aug

* Highest since at least start of 2010

* Food costs up 1.5 pct m/m, rents down 0.8 pct

By Martina Fuchs

DUBAI, Oct 20 (Reuters) - Annual consumer price inflation in Qatar rose to 2.2 percent in September because of a jump in food costs, reaching its highest level since at least the beginning of 2010, when the Statistics Authority began publishing year-on-year data.

The inflation rate climbed from 2.1 percent in August, continuing this year’s uptrend from 1.6 percent in January. Qatar resumed experiencing inflation last December after a protracted period of deflation.

Consumer prices rose 0.1 percent month-on-month in September after a 0.2 percent increase in August, data from the Statistics Authority showed on Thursday.

“On a monthly basis, food was the most important category driving inflation up,” said Giyas Gokkent, chief economist at National Bank of Abu Dhabi.

“Qatar is what we call a small open economy. Global inflation developments matter a lot to price developments in Qatar.”

Food prices, which account for 13.2 percent of the consumer basket, gained 1.5 percent month-on-month in September after a 1.8 percent drop in the previous month. The rents, fuel and energy component, which makes up 32.2 percent of the weighting, dropped 0.8 percent after a 0.5 percent decrease in August.

Analysts polled by Reuters in September predicted Qatar would see average inflation of 2.7 percent in 2011, after deflation of 2.4 percent last year .

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