Nigeria December inflation rises for eleventh month running to 18.55 pct

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ABUJA, JANUARY 13, 2017 – Annual inflation in Nigeria rose in December to 18.55 percent, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Friday, its highest in more than 11 years and the eleventh straight monthly rise.

The rise from 18.48 percent in November was driven by surges in housing, water and electricity, while a separate food index also rose to 17.39 percent from 17.19 percent in November, the statistics office.

Galloping inflation comes as Africa’s largest economy grapples with its first recession in 25 years, largely caused by the fall in global oil prices since 2014. Crude oil sales account for 70 percent of government revenue.

President Muhammadu Buhari last month presented a record 7.298 trillion naira ($23.97 billion) budget for 2017 aimed at stimulating growth and pulling the economy out of recession, but economists have questioned whether those targets are achievable.

The soaring cost of living in Nigeria, where the United Nations estimates that 70 percent of the population live on a dollar a day, has prompted widespread anger at Buhari’s handling of the economy.

 

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