By Matt Ayres

The UK's inflation rate remained at a record low of 0% in March, according to official figures.

Cheaper food and energy prices are the main reason why inflation remained at zero last month, according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS).

The figure is the lowest rate of Consumer Prices Index (CPI) inflation since estimates of the measure began in the late 1980s.

This means the cost of living is the same as it was a year earlier.

Britain came extremely close to negative inflation, with the ONS revealing that March’s CPI actually dropped by 0.01%, which has rounded up to zero.

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Director of Economics, commented: “Zero inflation in March comes as no surprise, given the drop in commodity prices we have seen for some time now. Inflation should start to pick up in the second half of the year, especially as the downward pressure from lower oil prices eases.

“Falling prices have seen money go that bit further for households’ weekly shop, and many firms are benefiting from lower oil prices.”