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Egypt’s inflation falls to lowest this year

Egyptian street vendor sells fresh fruit and vegetables [file photo]
Egyptian street vendor sells fresh fruit and vegetables [file photo]

Egypt’s inflation in November fell to a 2017 low a year after the country floated its pound currency as part of a $12 billion International Monetary Fund deal to boost the economy.

Inflation has shot up since the pound’s flotation last November, reaching a record high in July on the back of energy subsidy cuts, but has gradually eased since. Annual urban consumer price inflation eased to 26 percent in November from 30.8 percent the previous month, official data showed on Sunday. Core inflation, which strips out volatile items such as food, fell to 25.53 percent from 30.53 percent.

The central bank has raised key interest rates by 700 basis points since the pound float, but economists see it cutting them in its monetary policy meeting later this month amid a continuing easing of post-float inflationary pressure.

Egypt’s finance minister said on Sunday that he expected inflation to reach 20 percent by January and 13-14 percent by August.

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