China’s inflation eases

Beijing, May 11: China’s inflation eased slightly in April as warm weather led to a drop in food prices, building up confidence that the government’s annual targets set for the area could be met.

China’s consumer price index (CPI), a main gauge of inflation, rose 3.4 percent year on year in April, according to new data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) Friday.

The growth eased slightly from the 3.6-percent rate registered in March. It hit a 20-month low of 3.2 percent in February, reported Xinhua.

The Chinese government is aiming to keep CPI increases to around 4 percent.

Food prices, which account for nearly one-third of the weighting in the calculation of China’s CPI, increased 7 percent last month from one year earlier. The growth compared to the 7.5-percent rate registered in March.

On a monthly basis, food prices dropped 0.9 percent from March, the NBS said.

Statistics from the Ministry of Commerce showed that despite a small rebound at the end of April, farm produce prices continued falling in the month, with prices of vegetables and pork significantly down.

Meanwhile, China’s Producer Price Index (PPI), a main gauge of inflation at the wholesale level, fell 0.7 percent in April from a year earlier.

The data marked another month of decline yea on year after China’s PPI saw a drop in March for the first time since December 2009, NBS data showed.

The country’s CPI climbed 3.8 percent in the first quarter of 2012 compared with the previous year. On a monthly basis, the CPI edged down 0.1 percent in April, the NBS added.