KUALA LUMPUR, Oct. 26 (Xinhua) -- Malaysia's Consumer Price Index (CPI) grew at a slower pace of 0.3 percent in September, despite the introduction of Sales & Service Tax (SST), official data showed Friday. Malaysian Statistics Department said in a statement that the slow growth was due to the impact of fuel prices which remained at about the same level from March to September as compared to the same period last year. Five of the 12 main groups still recorded positive annual price changes, in which housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels rose 2.1 percent, restaurants and hotels and education grew 1.1 percent respectively. Food and non-alcoholic beverages, which accounted for 29.5 percent in the CPI weights, went up 0.5 percent, while transport expanded 0.3 percent. On a monthly basis, CPI increased 0.4 percent as compared to August. For the period January to September, the CPI posted an increase of 1.2 percent as compared to the same period last year. The Socio-Economic Research Centre (SERC)'s economist and executive director Lee Heng Guie expects the inflation to remain subdued in the following months, due to higher base last year. "The September inflation rate was lower than expectation. It showed that the SST has not led to price increases. We maintain our full year inflation rate of 1.3 percent," he told Xinhua via phone. However, due to low base this year, he believed the inflation rate will trend higher to 2 percent next year.