(Bloomberg) --

Ethiopia inflation accelerated to the highest level in almost a decade in December as the cost of food surged amid a civil war in the Horn of Africa nation.

The annual rate climbed to 35.1% from 33% in November, according to the Central Statistical Agency of Ethiopia. Prices rose 1.4% in the month.

Food costs increased 41.6% year-on-year, compared with a 28.9% increase in November, mainly due to a jump in the prices of vegetables, meat, milk, cheese, eggs and spices. Those for coffee beans and non-alcoholic beverages also increased.

Key Insights:

  • Prices usually rise in December as Christmas celebrations increase demand, according to the statistics office.
  • Price pressures have been exacerbated by a 14-month civil war that has disrupted farm production and supply. The dispute between Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s administration and the northern Tigray region’s dissident leaders is yet to be resolved.
  • The Ethiopian birr has weakened more than 20% against the dollar over the past year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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