Nigeria Inflation Hits 17-Year High Amid Soaring Food Prices

Nigeria's inflation rate hit a fresh 17-year high in September, stoked by a slide in the value of the naira that raised the cost of imported goods like gas and liquid fuel, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

According to the report, inflation stood at 16.63% in September 2021, when compared on a year-on-year basis.

The NBS attributed the decline in food inflation in September to a reduction in prices of some food items particularly tubers, palm oil, maize, beans, and vegetables, as well as, import cost hikes due to currency weakness and a rise in production costs were likely factors for increases in price levels. Policy-makers in Nigeria maintain that persistent inflationary pressures are structural and largely imported. Analysts say inflation is driven by dollar scarcity, high diesel cost, and excess liquidity.

In October 2022, President Muhammadu Buhari said in his 2023 budget speech that Nigeria expects inflation to remain in double digits, averaging 17.16% next year.

Economists warn that the Nigerian government is spending more money on debt repayments than on education and health, but Buhari said his government had no choice but to borrow its way out of two recessions in the past seven years.


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