Irish prices rise nearly 7 percent in March due to the Russia-Ukraine war

Irish prices rose by more than a point to 6.9 percent in March, according to a flash estimate by the EU statistics agency today.

Inflation in Ireland in February was 5.7 percent according to the EU harmonized indicator (5.6 percent according to the Irish consumer price index).

The Economic and Social Research Institute has predicted that prices could rise by as much as 8.5 percent by the summer.

The figure in Ireland is below the average rate in the euro zone, which rose to 7.5 percent last month from 5.9 percent in February, according to Eurostat, a new euro-era high.

Euro-zone energy prices rose 44.7 percent in March versus 32 percent in February, while food, alcohol and tobacco rose 5 percent versus 4.2 percent in February.

Underlying inflation, excluding volatile energy and food prices, was 3 percent in March, above the European Central Bank’s target of 2 percent.

Inflation in the Netherlands rose to 11.9 percent last month, with double-digit price increases also recorded in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Price increases in Belgium, Spain and Slovakia also approached 10 percent.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has put additional pressure on energy and food prices, with oil prices falling below $100 a barrel on Friday as the US ordered an unprecedented release of strategic reserves to tame runaway prices.

Natural gas prices fell after rising as much as 5.6 percent earlier Friday as traders weighed the potential impact on the market of Russia’s decision to switch payment for its supplies to rubles, which could result in President Vladimir Putin’s failure to pay stops deliveries.

The European Commission this week raided Russian gas companies in Germany over allegations that Mr Putin has been holding back supplies since last year despite rising demand in Europe.

Irish consumers could face further hikes in energy prices as a result of volatility.

Electric Ireland has already announced it will increase electricity and gas prices in May, becoming the fourth energy company here to announce a price increase this year.

This means that the average electricity bill over a year will increase by €300 and the gas bill by €220 for Electric Ireland’s 1.1 million customers.

Bord Gáis energy increases from April 25 will result in the average annual electricity bill increasing by €385 and gas bill by €390. Irish prices rise nearly 7 percent in March due to the Russia-Ukraine war

Fry Electronics Team

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