9 Jun 2008

Cost of living in Marshall's capital soars

10:51 am on 9 June 2008

In the Marshall Islands, the cost of living rose by more than 10 percent in Majuro from January to March this year more than double the inflation rate for all of fiscal year 2007.

The information was released in a report issued by the government's Economic Policy, Planning and Statistics Office.

The January-March quarter saw the inflation rate at 10.19 percent compared to an inflation rate of just 4.43 percent for all of he previous year.

The report says driving the skyrocketing costs in the Marshall Islands capital, Majuro were food and utility price rises.

It found major increases in the price of flour, rice, eggs and many other food items.

Utilities and major appliances jumped 30 percent during the quarter.

Ebeye, the country's second major urban center with a population of about 12,000 saw inflation jump by 6.7 percent during this period.

But Ebeye prices are already significantly higher than in Majuro.

The report said utility and retail clothing costs rose significantly during the quarter.

The report shows that the same basket of food that costs 136 US dollars and 63 cents on Majuro costs 169 US dollars and 40 cents on Ebeye, 24 percent more.