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Hikes High taxes may force inflation up--Gov’t Statistician

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Government Statistician, Dr Philomena Nyarko has said the recent utility and fuel hikes may have a boomerang effect on the economy by forcing inflation up.

In an interview with Accra based Citi FM, Dr. Nyarko siad:“We are talking about utility and fuel prices, taxes, rent and all others, so the influence of utility hike reflect in high price of things, then we may as a country see high inflation rates so the policy makers will have to find a way of bringing down some of these tariffs and taxes so that the common man could have some form of relief.”

Electricity and water tariffs were increased to 59.2 per cent and 67.2 per cent respectively by the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC), last month.

Fuel prices also shot up by 27% occasioned by the passage of the Energy Sector Levy by Parliament.

Government’s inflation target for this year is 8%.

Government last year missed its inflation target of 11.5% to close the year on 17.7 percent, the highest rate since July 2015, according to inflation data from the Ghana Statistical Service.

At a media briefing to announce the inflation rate for December, Dr. Philomena Nyarko attributed the increase to the recent hikes in utility prices and projected a continuous rise in inflation rate for the first quarter of 2016.

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