Jakarta (ANTARA) - Statistics Indonesia (BPS) has highlighted the need to remain vigilant against inflation in the prices of food commodities, especially rice, ahead of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr.

"We must be aware of inflation. During Ramadan, prices usually increase. In general, historical data has always shown that inflation always occurs during Ramadan," acting head of the BPS, Amalia Adininggar Widyasanti, said here on Monday.

She made the statement at the Coordination Meeting for Food Supply and Price Security Ahead of Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr.

Widyasanti noted that several years ago, rice was not the biggest contributor to inflation compared to other commodities.

She said that in the past three years, the commodities that have contributed the most to inflation ahead of Ramadan have been purebred chicken meat, purebred chicken eggs, and beef.

However, in March, rice has been among the commodities contributing the most to monthly inflation.

As per the BPS' records, the inflation rate in February stood at 0.37 percent (month on month), with volatile food inflation recorded at 1.53 percent, which had a higher contribution (0.25 percent) compared to other components.

"Several food commodities causing inflation in February 2024 are red chilis, purebred chicken eggs, purebred chicken meat, which also drove inflation in February 2024, and we need to be alert for inflation in March and April," she said.

Meanwhile, she noted that during Ramadan, the transportation sector, especially air transportation, is usually the highest contributor to inflation.

Widyasanti predicted that rice production will start to increase in March and peak in April. Furthermore, West Java, Central Java, and East Java are predicted to emerge as the biggest producers in the 2024 harvest season.

With the increase in production, inflation is expected to be under control.

"We must anticipate the inflation in this year's Eid. Hopefully, it will not be too high compared to last year," she said.

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Translator: Bayu Saputra, Raka Adji
Editor: Tia Mutiasari
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