According to figures released today, inflation in the Caribbean Netherlands in terms of the consumer price index (CPI) continued to fall in the first quarter of 2015. On Bonaire and St Eustatius inflation was even negative. This is the first time since inflation has been measured in the Caribbean Netherlands that inflation on the islands was negative.
The strong decrease in petrol prices pushed down inflation on all three islands. On Bonaire and St Eustatius electricity rates for consumers were also considerably reduced, which had an additional downward effect on inflation.
On Bonaire, inflation fell substantially in the first quarter, to -0.6 percent. In the last quarter of 2014, it was still 0.9 percent. The petrol price fell by 20 percent, the main cause of lower inflation on Bonaire. The lower price of electricity in the first quarter also contributed to the decrease in inflation.
Inflation on St Eustatius dropped from 1.6 to -1.1 percent in the first quarter of 2015. This is the largest fall of the three islands. Inflation on St Eustatius fell as a result of lower consumer rates for electricity. Lower prices for motor fuels also had a strong downward effect on inflation.
Saba inflation fell by 1.1 percentage points to 1.0 percent. This was mainly the consequence of lower prices for a large number of toiletries. The petrol price fell by less on Saba than on the other islands, but did contribute to the decrease in inflation.
Figures for the first quarter of 2015 are provisional and will become definite when the figures for the second quarter of 2015 are published.
This article is also available in Papiamento.