Belarus's inflation soars to 10-year high

13:38, July 15, 2011      

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Belarus's consumer prices have soared by 36.2 percent since the start of the year, the highest inflation rate over 10 years, deputy chairman of the National Statistical Committee Irina Kangro said on Thursday.

According to the official, since the beginning of the year, prices of non-food products rose by almost 56 percent, and tariffs for paid services advanced as much as 21 percent.

Belarusian authority has decided to lift price controls on some basic goods that could previously only be sold at state-mandated prices, the Ministry of Economy pricing policy director Igor Fomin said.

Belarus's currency crisis was sparked last year by pre-election spending promises from Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko and a subsequent jump in the price Russia charges for its oil.

At the end of May Belarusian National Bank cut almost in half the value of the Belarusian ruble against the dollar, causing panic across the country.

Last week the National Bank raised its benchmark interest rate by 2.0 percentage points to 20 percent, one of the highest in the world, in a bid to battle inflation.

Source: Xinhua
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