Cost of living in Lusaka records K352.87 increase

• This is due to the increase in the price of charcoal as well as tomatoes.
• With the devastating effects of the prolonged droughts in the country, the impact has further highlighted already existing inequalities.

•As a driver of the rising cost of living, the climate crisis often escalates challenges in the food supply chain, leading to increased prices of food items.

 

Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) has disclosed that the cost of living for a family in Lusaka increased by K352.87 in May, 2024.

Centre Social & Economic Development Programme Officer, Lukwesa Musonda, says the Basic Needs and Nutrition Basket now stands at K10, 701.13, compared to K10, 603 recorded in April, 2024.

Ms. Musonda attributed the increase in the basket to the rise in the price of charcoal which stood at K458.33 from K343.33 for a 90kg bag, as well as tomatoes which rose to K29.99 per kg from K16.38 per kg.

She noted that with the devastating effects of the prolonged droughts in the country, the impact has further highlighted already existing inequalities.

“As a driver of the rising cost of living, the climate crisis often escalates challenges in the food supply chain, leading to increased prices of food items.”

“The most significant change observed in the basket was due to an increase in the price of charcoal. This increase was driven by several factors affecting the charcoal markets within Lusaka. Firstly, the ban on charcoal production in three districts, Shibuyungi, Itezhi-Tezhi, and Mumbwa, announced in April, took effect during the month under review,” Ms. Musonda noted.

Ms. Musonda added that the rise in fuel pump prices has increased transportation costs, while extended load shedding hours have led to higher demand for charcoal in households.

“This is despite the presence of seemingly cheaper alternatives such as gas for cooking and solar for lighting, which, upon closer inspection, may not actually be as economical especially for the common man,” she noted.

She however observed that the ban on charcoal production in the three districts is a necessary measure to combat deforestation and protect the environment.

“On the other hand, it affects the livelihoods of many who depend on charcoal production as a livelihood,” Ms. Musonda said.

Ms. Musonda called for promotion of Sustainable Energy Alternatives in a bid to expand access to and reduce costs of alternative energy sources such as briquettes, which can be manufactured from readily available materials like wood shavings, sawdust, or recycled wood, paper, or leaves.

She said currently, limited options force many individuals to rely on charcoal for their energy needs, exacerbating environmental degradation and contributing to the rising costs of living.

More From Author

TI-Z implores LEAs to provide quantitative reports on illicit financial transactions

• The public is interested in evaluating the efficiency of Law Enforcement Agencies in taking…

Read More

Serbia pledges to support Zambia in mitigating disaster caused by severe drought

A delegation would soon be dispatched to Zambia to assess the drought situation. The delegation…

Read More

ZCSA destroys non-compliant peanut butter, urges manufacturers to comply with Compulsory Standards

The product did not meet the requirements of the relevant Compulsory Standard. The disposal of…

Read More

You May Also Like

TI-Z implores LEAs to provide quantitative reports on illicit financial transactions

• The public is interested in evaluating the efficiency of Law Enforcement Agencies in taking…

Read More

Serbia pledges to support Zambia in mitigating disaster caused by severe drought

A delegation would soon be dispatched to Zambia to assess the drought situation. The delegation…

Read More

ZCSA destroys non-compliant peanut butter, urges manufacturers to comply with Compulsory Standards

The product did not meet the requirements of the relevant Compulsory Standard. The disposal of…

Read More