Food prices have gone up again this month. / Migue Fernández

Prices in April: energy and fuel costs have dropped, but food shopping has been more expensive

The Consumer Price Index in Spain has fallen by nearly one and a half per cent compared with last month and is now 8.4 per cent

ANTONIO JAVIER LÓPEZ Malaga

The constant rise in prices has eased slightly this month, according to initial figures, although inflation is still at worrying levels. The annual consumer price index is now at 8.4%, but at least that is nearly one and a half per cent lower than the March figure of 9.8%. The reduction is due to energy prices being contained, especially those ofelectricity and fuels; however, food shopping is even more expensive than it was a month ago.

The figures published by the National Institute of Statistics on Thursday are for the country as a whole, and the data by province will be released next week. That will give an accurate figure of price movements in Malaga, where in March the CPI was 10.1%, higher than the figure for Spain. Last month it was shown that food shopping in Malaga province cost 7.8% more than it had a year previously, whereas in the rest of the country the increase was 6.8%.

Russian invasion of Ukraine

With the Russian invasion of Ukraine as a backdrop to the rise in fuel prices, those relating to the use of private vehicles rose by 26.2% in Malaga in March, also above the countrywide average of 25.4%. Food, footwear, furniture, domestic appliances, and secondary and higher education also rose by more in Malaga than in the rest of the country.

Natalia Sánchez, the executive vice-president and general secretary of the Malaga Business Confederation, has said that although we have to wait to see the definitive data, it is bound to confirm these initial figures and will show that the reduction in the CPI in April could mark a turning point in the evolution of inflation.

“That is why, as well as the measures which have already been put into place, new ones are needed to enable the prices of fuel, raw materials and energy to drop. That is the only way we will start to see favourable effects on the economies of households and businesses,” she said.