Inflation rate of the Philippines in December increased to its highest level in two years as a result of devastation of typhoon Haiyan, or Yolanda, government agency announced on Tuesday.
The National Statistics Office on Tuesday said inflation in December was at 4.1 percent, the highest since December 2011 when the country's inflation rate was at 4.2 percent.
The figure was higher than the inflation rate of 3.3 percent in November and also exceeded the level of 3.0 percent a year ago.
This brought full year inflation to 3 percent, the low-end of the Development Budget Coordination Committee's inflation target of 3 to 5 percent for 2013.
"This is the highest inflation recorded since December 2011," Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said. "Moreover, relative to the previous months, food prices are usually higher in December due to the festive season."
Data showed that almost all food items posted higher prices in December. Food prices went up by 5 percent in December 2013 from 4 percent in the previous month.
This was due to price increases in rice which surged 9.2 percent; vegetables, 9.8 percent; meat, 2.3 percent; fish, 3.3 percent; and fruits, 4.3 percent, among others.
"Almost all food items in the average consumer basket increased, which can be mainly attributed to the impact of typhoon Haiyan, locally known as Yolanda that hit the central Philippines in November 2013," Balisacan said. "Some food items even reached double-digit inflation in the areas hardest hit by the typhoon."
In typhoon-affected areas, Eastern Visayas, prices of vegetables went up by 11.3 percent in December 2013 from 5.8 percent of November 2013.
Meanwhile, in Central Visayas, prices of rice increased by 12.2 percent, fruits up by 11.2 percent, and vegetables up by 11.3 percent.
In addition, the National Economic and Development Authority power hikes contributed significantly to the acceleration of overall inflation in December 2013.
The Manila Electric Company's generation charge rose by 40 percent year-on-year in December Enditem