South Korea’s 2022 consumer price index hits 24-year high due to soaring energy prices

The South Korean Bureau of Statistics reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which measures consumer spending inflation, increased 5.1% in 2022 from the previous year. This is the highest level in 24 years, or since 1998, and a sharp increase from 2.5% in 2021.

The report notes that utility costs increased 12.6% in 2022 from the previous year. South Korea, which relies heavily on imports to meet its energy needs, has been hit by rising prices for key global resources.

Prices for agriculture, fisheries and livestock increased by 3.8% in 2022, slower than in 2021 (8.7%), while prices for industrial goods rose by 6.9% year-on-year. Oil and processed food prices increased by 22.2% and 7.8%, respectively.

The core CPI, which excludes agricultural products and volatile oil prices, rose 4.1% in 2022, the fastest growth after 1.8% in 2021.

In December 2022, the CPI rose 5% year-on-year, with the CPI exceeding 5% for the eighth consecutive month.

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