Announcing the latest JCTR “Basic Needs Basket” (BNB), which normally takes into account the cost of living for a family of five across 15 major urban towns in the country, the cost of living for a family of five in Lusaka was recorded as K4,973.03 in April, 2017, down from more than K5,000 in March.
This is on account of reduced food and non-food prices.
“The April 2017 JCTR Basic Needs Basket (BNB) for a family of five living in Lusaka stood at K4,973.03, reflecting a K44.06 decrease from the March 2017 BNB of K5,017.09. The reduction in the April BNB is attributed to reduction in the cost of some food items such as beans which reduced from K40.1 to K30 per kg,” JCTR media and information officer Tendai Posiana states in a press statement.
The reduction in food items is attributed to increased food supply as the harvest season begins.
However, according to the BNB, data shows an increase in the price of kapenta from K181.05 per kg in March to K208.17 per kg in April, mainly attributable to the scarcity of the commodity due to depletion of species, while demand has remained constant.
And JCTR states that the BNB has ranged between K4,500 and K5,300 in the past four months, far higher than the monthly urban average income of K3,152.00, as estimated by the Central Statistical Office in the 2015 living conditions monitoring survey.
The annual rate of inflation, a major macroeconomic fundamental in influencing food and non-food prices, dropped to single digits last November and was 6.7 percent as at April, 2017.