Food prices may ease soon, says finance minister

Although the government remains concerned over surging inflation, it is optimistic that food prices will cool down over the next few months

The government on Wednesday described the surge in inflation as disturbing, but was also confident that food prices that were fuelling the price rise would ease in a few months—by the time the rabi crop reaches the market, reports PTI.

On the sidelines of a seminar on transfer pricing, finance minister Pranab Mukherjee told reporters, “That (rising inflation) is a matter of concern, no doubt. I am afraid the 8.5% rise in (the) wholesale price index is disturbing.”
He, however, exuded confidence that the inflation rate will ease in the next few months.

Inflation rose to over a 13-month high of 8.56% in January from 7.31% a month ago, driven mainly by higher food prices.

Food inflation rose for the third successive week and moved closer to 18% in the week ended 30th January.

The spiralling rise in food prices has been the primary reason behind surging inflation. It has forced the government to take necessary action on the supply side but it will take some time for the measures to take effect.
"We have taken adequate measures on the supply side which will take some time to have the pressing impact on rising prices, particularly of essential commodities. I do hope that over a period of few months, it will be possible to have a moderate rate of inflation," Mr Mukherjee added.

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