The inflation rates across the GCC region ranged between 1.5% and 3.4% over a 12-month period through May 2014, according to the latest reports by the Statistical Centre for the Cooperation Council for the Arab Countries of the Gulf (GCC-Stat).
The Latest inflation figures over the of 12 months period (through May 2014) reveal that Qatar topped the list with 3.4%, followed by 2.9% in Kuwait, 2.7% in Saudi Arabia, 2.1% in the United Arab Emirates, 1.9% in Bahrain, and 1.5% in the Sultanate of Oman.
When compared to April 2014 figures, inflation rates witnessed a slight increase of 0.2% in the United Arab Emirates, Sultanate of Oman and Kuwait, while 0.5% increase was registered in Qatar and 0.1% in Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, inflation figures in Bahrain for the month of May 2014 remained stable when compared to the figures of April 2014.
As for price growth within groups of the general consumer price index in each GCC member state, figures revealed an increase over the 12-month period through May 2014 as follows: Furniture and Household Goods increased by 4.7%, 5.2% and 7.4% in the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Oman respectively, while Education in Bahrain increased by 5%. Meanwhile, Tobacco prices in Saudi Arabia grew by 6.4%, whereas Housing and Energy costs increased in Qatar by 7%.
On the other hand, figures showed a decrease in other groups whereby Communication in Bahrain showed a 0.6% decrease, Communication & Transportation in Saudi Arabia went down by 0.9%, Recreation and Culture Category in Oman decreased by 0.8%, while prices for Miscellaneous Goods and Services decreased in Qatar and Kuwait by 0.6% and 1.5% in the same order. The overall figures revealed an increase in prices of Furniture and Household Goods through May 2014 where Oman came first with 7.4%, followed by Qatar with 5.4%, then 5.2% in Kuwait, 4.7% in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, while prices in Bahrain witnessed a slight increase of 1%.
In contrast, the Telecommunication group showed a decrease in three countries: 0.6% in Bahrain, 0.9% in Saudi Arabia and 1.1% in Kuwait. The Transportation group prices decreased by 0.7% in the Sultanate of Oman and 0.9% in Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, prices of Miscellaneous Goods and Services in Qatar and Kuwait went down by 0.6% and 1.5% respectively.