ISLAMABAD - The inflation based on Consumer Price Index (CPI) surged by 20.77 per cent in the last financial year, 2008-09, as compared to fiscal year 2007-08 mainly due to increase in the prices of fuel and food commodities. Federal Bureau of Statistics (FBS) on Thursday revealed the inflation figures of the last financial year. The data showed that inflation soared by 20.77 per cent in the last fiscal year, while it enhanced by 13.13 per cent in the month of June 2009 against 21.53 per cent in the same month of 2008. The inflation measured by Wholesale Price Index (WPI) increased by 18.19 per cent in last fiscal year against 16.41 per cent of 2007-08. Similarly inflation based on Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI) was recorded at 23.41 per cent in 2008-09, the data revealed. The economists are of the view that despite keeping tight monetary policy, the government was unable to reduce the inflation and it would challenge the government to bring it in the single digit in the current year. They believed that the government had withdrawn subsidies worth Rs 120.1 billion and also imposed new taxes worth Rs 69 billion for the ongoing year, which would further increase inflation in the country. WPI skyrocketed to 4.15 per cent in the month of June, which was 30.62 per cent a year ago, while SPI in June soared by 10.80 per cent as compared to the corresponding period of the last year. The break-up of CPI based on general inflation (13.13 per cent in June 2009) illustrated that apart from 10.50 per cent food inflation, apparel, textile and footwear inflation soared by 10.93 per cent in June 2009 over the same period of the last year. Similarly, the house rents were increased by 18.60 per cent. The fuel prices augmented by 23.78 per cent, household, furniture and equipment by 10.75 per cent, transport and communication by 5.01 per cent, recreation and entertainment by 4.53 per cent, education became expensive by 19.18 per cent, cleaning and laundry rates swelled by 14.26 per cent and medicare rates shot up by 6.26 per cent during the period under review. On month-on-month basis, the CPI based inflation ballooned by 0.99 per cent in June over May 2009. While inflation based on SPI increased by 1.17 per cent. Wholesale Price Indicator ballooned by 2.40 per cent. The prices of main commodities in the kitchen items, which increased in June over May, last year, include tomatoes, 71.40 per cent, potatoes, 38.16 per cent, gur, 8.32 per cent, pulse wash, 3.38 per cent, fresh milk, 3.22 per cent, pulse moong, 3.14 per cent, milk products, 3.09 per cent, cooking oil, 2.81 per cent, vegetable ghee, 2.68 per cent, vegetables, 2.32 per cent, beverages, 2.26 per cent, gram whole, 2.13 per cent, milk powder, 2 per cent, tea, 1.52 per cent, honey, 1.34 per cent, readymade food, 1.24 per cent, meat, 1.01 per cent, and sugar, 0.96 per cent. In fuel and lighting group, the prices of kerosene increased by 8.59 per cent while in transport and communication group, the prices of diesel and petrol enhanced by 12.29 per cent and 10.22 per cent respectively. Similarly jewellery prices soared by 10.22 per cent. The division of general inflation (4.15 per cent) based on WPI showed that food basket became costly by 10.25 per cent, raw materials, 11.94 per cent, fuel, lighting and lubricants decreased by 3.99 per cent, manufactures prices increased by 3.16 per cent, and cost of building materials went down by 10.14 per cent, in June over May, last year. Imran Ali Kundi