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    Why the delay in providing inflation data, Query IMF

     Why the delay in providing inflation data, questions IMF

    In meeting with BBS, IMF has suggested reforms in the calculation method of inflation and GDP calculation.

    The visiting International Monetary Fund (IMF) delegation asked why there was a delay in releasing the inflation data for the month of August. This question was asked in the meeting held on Tuesday with senior officials of Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS). In response, BBS officials said that there was a delay in getting information from the field and getting approval from policy makers.

    In addition, the IMF has suggested reforming the calculation method of inflation and gross domestic product (GDP). On Tuesday morning, a delegation headed by visiting IMF Mission Chief Rahul Anand went to the BBS office in Agargaon for a meeting. Director General of BBS in the meeting. Matiar Rahman and other senior officials were present.

    In the first week of last August, the price of all things increased due to the increase in the price of petrol, octane, diesel. Transport fares also increase. Due to these reasons, economists feared high inflation in August. But the BBS did not publish the data for that month due to rising inflation. Later, last October, the data of August and September was released together.

    Inflation was 9.52 percent in August. In September, this rate decreased slightly to 9.1 percent. August saw the highest inflation in the last 11 years and 3 months (135 months). Earlier in May 2011, the highest rate of inflation was 10.20 percent.

    In this regard, Director General of BBS. Motiar Rahman told Prothom Alo, "The IMF delegation wanted to know why there was a delay in publishing the inflation data for the month of August?"

    In response, I said that the information from the field has been delayed. It also took time to get approval from policy makers. Now the inflation data is being released regularly.

    In the meeting, the IMF suggested reforms in the inflation calculation method. At present inflation is calculated for the base year 2005-06. The delegation urged to change this and calculate inflation for the base year 2015-16.

    The base year is changed every few years to get a true picture of inflation. The base year is not being changed for inflation for more than 10 years. With the passage of time, people's consumption of food and non-food products changes. As people's eating habits change, so does their lifestyle. So changing the base year gives a picture of a person's spending trend. It is known that a person is consuming more or less of any kind of goods and services than before.

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