Inflation accelerated at its fasted rate this year in May, breaking into three –digit territory on annualized basis for the first time since June last year as authorities grapple to contain headwinds from multiple fronts, including the effect of the Ukraine war.
Zimbabwe’s battered currency and failure by authorities to instill confidence in the economy continues to pile pressure on efforts to control inflation.
According to latest figures from Zimstat, year-on-year inflation rate (annual percentage change) for the month of May 2022 as measured by the all items Consumer Price Index stood at 131.7 percent from 96.4 percent in April.
The CPI for the month ending May 2022 stood at 6,662.17 compared to 5,507.11 in April 2022 and 2,874.85 in May 2021.
The month-on-month inflation rate in May 2022 was 21 percent gaining 5.5 percentage points on the April 2022 rate of 15.5 percent, the highest this year.
The Food Poverty Line (FPL) for one person in May 2022 was $10,537.00. The Total Consumption Poverty Line (TCPL) for one person stood at $14,041.00 in May 2022.
The latest inflation figures are in stark contrast to projections by the Finance and Economic Development Minister, Prof. Mthuli Ncube of easing prices to 5.5 percent month-on-month and 35 percent annualized inflation by end of this year.
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe increased interest rates beginning of second quarter this year to 80 percent in an attempt to arrest soaring food prices but this not been able to restore stability with the bank attributing failure of its measures to market indiscipline.
Recently, the government scrapped duty on imported food stuffs in a bid to make available basic commodities at cheaper prices, a move widely castigated by proponents of local production.