Qatar's cost of living, based on consumer price index (CPI) inflation, declined 0.41% year-on-year in January 2020 mainly on fall in the indices of housing, utilities, recreation and communication, according to the official statistics.
The country witnessed a 0.9% shrinkage in inflation in January compared with December 2019, according to figures released by the Planning and Statistics Authority (PSA).
The International Monetary Fund, in its Article IV consultation with Qatar, said inflation is projected to peak at 3.7% in 2020 with the introduction of a value added tax, but converge to 2% in the medium term.
The index of housing, water, electricity and other fuels – with a weight of 21.89% in the CPI basket – saw a 3.69% and 0.9% declines year-on-year and month-on-month respectively in January 2020.
The CPI of January 2020 excluding “housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, however, rose 0.55% on yearly basis, even as it fell 0.78% on monthly basis.
The index of recreation and culture, which has a 12.68% weight in the CPI basket, saw 4.15% and 5.43% drop both year-on-year and month-on-month respectively this January.
Communication, which carries 5.87% weight, saw its group index shrank 2.44% and 0.09% on yearly and monthly basis respectively in January 2020.
In the case of furniture and household equipment, which has a 7.7% weight in the CPI basket, the index was down 0.49% on a yearly basis, but rose 0.63% month-on-month in January 2020.
However, the index of restaurants and hotels, which has a 6.08% weight, soared 4.96% and 1.54% year-on-year and month-on-month respectively in the review period.
The index of health, which carries 1.79% bearing, witnessed 3.07% and 2.21% surge on yearly and monthly basis respectively in January this year.
Miscellaneous goods and services, which has a 5.69% weight, saw its index gain 1.97% year-on-year, but fell 1.73% month-on-month in January 2020.
The index of transport, which has a 14.59% weight, shot up 1.69% on a yearly basis, even as it was down 1.76% on a monthly basis in January this year. The sector has the direct linkage to the dismantling of administered prices in petrol and diesel.
The price of super gasoline witnessed a year-on-year increase of 23% in January 2020, while it was flat on a monthly basis. In the case of premium gasoline, it soared by 17% on yearly basis; whereas it was unchanged month-on-month. Diesel price saw a 6% year-on-year increase, but was unchanged month-on-month.
Food and beverages, which has a weight of 12.58% in the CPI basket, witnessed a 1.49% and 0.29% increase year-on-year and month-on-month respectively in January 2020.
Education, with a 5.75% weight, saw its index tread a flat course on a monthly basis but registered a 0.95% growth on a yearly basis in January this year.
The index of clothing and footwear, which has a 5.11% weight in the CPI basket, was up 0.36% and 1.48% year-on-year and month-on-month respectively in January 2020.
The tobacco index, which has a 0.27% weight, was flat both on yearly and monthly basis in the review period.