x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Cookers, freezers, washing machines ‘to go up 10%'

If you plan on buying new appliances, you might want to do it soon, since prices are expected to climb.

The cost of home appliances is likely to rise 10 per cent this year, according to oneof the UAE's biggest retailers.
The cost of home appliances is likely to rise 10 per cent this year, according to oneof the UAE's biggest retailers.

If you are looking to buy new "white goods" appliances such as washing machines, refrigerators or cookers, it may be wise to do it sooner rather than later.

Prices of such products are expected to rise by as much as 10 per cent by the end of the year, says the chief executive of one of the country's biggest retailers.

Deepak Babani, who heads the Eros group, predicted that the cost of "white goods" will rise by about 5 per cent in the first half of this year and another 5 per cent in the second half.

"We're working … to smooth this out, rather than give a shock to the market of 10 per cent to 12 per cent, which at this moment, we're not sure that it can take," he said. "We're trying to table that over a period of time," said Mr Babani said.

A rally in commodity prices is to blame for the increase, he added.

Electronics such as televisions and computers typically drop in price over time. But as the price of copper, aluminium and other commodities becomes more expensive, consumers will probably see appliances, in particular, cost more this year, he said.

The average price of aluminium last month was $2,351 a tonne, up 7.8 per cent from a the same month a year earlier, according to commodity price data from the World Bank. But the price of copper has jumped dramatically, to an average price of $9,147 a tonne last month, up 31 per cent from the same period a year earlier.

The private banking house RBS Coutts predicts copper will set new highs this year and lead the performance of metals and other commodities in the longer term.

aligaya@thenational.ae