The consumer price index (CPI) in May soared 2.21 percent against last month, causing an increase in the five-month CPI to over 12 percent since December 2010, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).

The May CPI increase has been slowed down in comparison to that of April, thanks to efforts to control inflation by the Government.

Of the 11 consumption categories, only post and telecom services saw a reduction, of 1.68 percent, while other categories increased by between 0.25-3.19 percent.

The biggest price hike in the month were seen in housing and construction materials with 3.19 percent, followed by food and restaurant service with 3.01 percent. Transport was up 2.67 percent and commodities and other services saw an increase of 2.06 percent. Education increased by only 0.25 percent.

According to GSO analysts, May CPI saw a remarkable slow down, but it was still high in comparison with CPI in May during the past 15 years, only lower than that of May 2008, when a 3.9 percent rise was recorded.

Price hikes of essential goods were attributed to the high rate of CPI in May as prices of gas, cement and kerosene increased over 5 percent in May.

The GOS said that increases in food and restaurant service prices were an important reason for the high rate of May CPI.

Additionally, bank interest rates for Vietnamese dong loans caused price rises on many goods and services.

The exchange rate between US dollar and Vietnamese dong also lifted the prices of several essential goods and materials that Vietnam had to import. The prices of medicines and medical services increasing by 1.2 percent was evidence of this impact.

Economists forecast that June CPI may increase by only about 0.7-08 percent over May as a result of the continuous implementation of the Government’s Resolution 11 on inflation control.
In May, the gold price increased by 1.43 percent month-on-month but rose 4.8 percent over December, 2010 while the US dollar dropped, by 0.98 percent month-on-month and increased by only 1.03 percent over December last year./.