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ECONOMY | 24-01-2023 13:41

Venezuela closed 2022 with an inflation rate of 234%

Government officials in Venezuela reveal inflation has dropped from 130,000% per annum in 2018 to 234% in 2022, though private forecasters warn hyperinflation remains a threat.

Venezuela recorded an annual inflation of 234 percent in 2022, Vice-President Delcy Rodríguez announced on Monday against 686.4 percent the previous year. 

"In December 2018, inflation was 130,000 percent and we will close 2022 with 234 percent," Rodríguez said during a meeting with Turkish and Venezuelan businessmen. 

The slowdown, she said, is a product of policies employed since 2018, when President Nicolás Maduro began to relax tight price and currency controls.

However, the nation's inflation rate remains one of the highest in the world. 

The Venezuelan deputy leader did not detail monthly data for November and December. The nation's Central Bank has not published data since October when it put the monthly index at 6.2 percent and the annual rate at 119.4 percent. 

Economists estimate that inflation in November and December may have pushed into the double digits.

"In the last two months there has been a significant jump in the monthly inflation rate, and of course in the year-on-year rate as well," Leonardo Vera, a professor and economist at the Central University of Venezuela (UCV), told AFP, linking this to the depreciation of the local currency, the bolívar. 

Private economic consultancy firms are warning that Venezuela could re-enter the vicious cycle of hyperinflation that it got out of in 2021 after four years of punishing price rises. 

Rodríguez, however, said the country will continue to work to control inflation.

"It is an aspect that, for us, is fundamental to our social agenda because we know how the inflationary aspect impacts on the lives of the people," she concluded.

 

–– TIMES/AFP

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