Consumer Price Index (CPI) in January rose 1.25 percent against the previous month, in line with expectations, according to a report released by the General Statistics Office on January 24.
The figure is slightly lower than the 1.74 percent rise recorded in January 2011 and 1.36 percent in January 2010, but four times higher than in December 2012.
Notably, prices of 10 out of the 11 group of commodities used to calculate CPI increased considerably, with tobacco and medical services taking the lead. Only post and telecommunications services fell by 0.05 percent.
An official from the General Statistics Office said a 7.4 percent rise in hospital fees and medical services was the main cause of CPI increase in January.
Meanwhile, food and foodstuff prices which were predicted to go up sharply before the Tet Lunar New Year holiday season only inched up 1.34 percent.
Last year farmers refused to develop new flocks due to high price of feed and low cost of imported chicken.
Following a recent crackdown on illegal import of discarded chicken, scarcity of chicken in the market has driven up price of poultry products.
The CPI rise causes fear in the population of an inflation ghost. The General Statistics Office suggested that businesses and localities need to stockpile necessities to meet consumer demand the Tet holiday season and any price hike must be nipped in the bud.