Portugal's inflation rate accelerated to 8 percent in May, according to the second estimate published by the National Statistics Institute (INE), compared to a rate of 7.2 percent in April. This is the highest figure recorded since February 1993.

Although the phenomenon is now more widespread, energy continues to make the biggest contribution to the high rise in prices in Portugal. Energy inflation accelerated to 27.3 percent (26.7 percent in April), the highest since February 1985.

Another component that has been accelerating is the price index for unprocessed food products, which stood at 11.6 percent in May, up from 9.4 percent in April.

In comparison with April, the year-on-year rate of change of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, and alcoholic beverages and tobacco were up in May. The statistics office says the most inflated goods are electricity, natural gas, fresh or refrigerated fruit, wine, and home furnishings.

"In contrast, transport and communications showed a decrease in the year-on-year rate of change to 10.8 percent and 2.2 percent respectively (13.1 percent and 3.2 percent in the previous month)," the INE said.

For the first time since inflation began to accelerate in Portugal, the average variation in the last twelve months of the inflation rate exceeded 3 percent, reaching 3.4 percent in May, up from 2.8 percent in April.

The government is counting on a deceleration of prices in the second half of the year.