SINGAPORE, March 24 (Xinhua) -- Singapore's consumer price index (CPI) rose by 0.4 percent in February on year at the slowest pace since 2010 after headline inflation hit a record low of 1.4 in January.
The city-state's Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) and the Monetary of Authority of Singapore (MAS), the central bank, said the decline had been anticipated in the January inflation report and largely reflected the higher base in February last year.
The accommodation cost rose by 2.0 percent in February, moderating from 2.4 percent in the previous month. Meanwhile, the private road transport cost fell by 7.1 percent, compared with 3.5 percent drop in January, due to base effects arising from the surge in Certificate of Entitlement (COE) in January, 2013 and the dip in petrol pump prices.
The joint statement by the MTI and the MAS said the food inflation was 2.3 percent last month, down from 3.0 percent in January "due to the correction in non-cooked food prices after the Chinese New Year as well as the high base last year."
Meanwhile, services fees rose at a slower pace of 2.1 percent in February compared to 2.9 percent in the preceding month.
The core inflation monitored by the central bank, which excludes the costs of accommodation and private road transport, fell to 1.6 percent in February from 2.2 percent in January due to the lower contributions from costs of food and services.
Looking forward, the MAS eyes overall imported inflation remaining subdued, while domestic costs could pass through more significantly to prices of consumer services.
The core inflation is expected to rise over the next few quarters. The full year core inflation will be at 2 percent to 3 percent this year.
The full-year headline inflation is expected to come in 2 percent to 3 percent in 2014.