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consumer price index (CPI) up


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The consumer price index (CPI) for February 2010 rose from the same month last year by 3.7 per cent and by 0.56 per cent over January to stand at 106.88, the Ministry of Commerce reported on Tuesday.


The core CPI, which excludes fresh food and energy, stood at 103.05 in February 2010, a 0.3 per cent increase from the same month last year and 0.02 per cent since January.


The food and beverage index for February 2010 was 120.39, up 5.1 per cent from the same month last year and 1.39 per cent from January.


The non-food index stood at 98.36, an increase of 2.9 per cent from February 2009, and 0.07 per cent over January.


“The increase in CPI clearly showed that the Thai economy is improving in both the agricultural and industrial sectorsâ€Â, the ministry’s permanent secretary Yanyong Phuangrach said on Tuesday.


He expected the inflation rate for this year to stand at between 3 and 3.5 per cent, and about 3.7 per cent for the first quarter.


Mr Yanyong said the Thai economy this year would primarily be influenced by the revitalising global economy, the country's political situation and the govrnment's measures to control the prices of commodity products.


He said all businesses had been asked to fix their product prices until the end of this month. The ministry would also consider pegging the prices for the next quarter, if costs remain unchanged.


He believed the uptrend of this year's GDP was because of the improvement in the export and agricultural sectors along with results from the government's Thai Khem Khaeng economic stimulus measures.



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