Venezuela's economic authorities have reported one-digit monthly inflation once again for a country that had grown accustomed to astronomic figures. However, independent observers consider this data to be absurd.
According to a Central Bank (BCV) released Wednesday, March showed a 1.4% adjustment, the lowest since 2012. It was the seventh successive monthly price index below 10% for a total of 11.4% in the first quarter of 2022, against 127.8% in the same period of 2021. In August 2012, inflation stood at 1.1%.
The country is emerging from hyperinflation after four years.
”With March's result, the accumulated variation at the end of the first quarter of the year stands at 11.4%, much lower than that obtained for the same period last year (127.8%), the BCV said through a statement.
With this new data, annualized inflation stood at 284.4%, less than one-tenth of that observed in March 2021 (3,012.2%), the document added.
Nevertheless, it continues to be one of the highest in the world.
The BCV has been regularly publishing the variation of prices in the last months, leaving behind the usual delays. In previous years, months went by without any updated figures.
The government of Nicolás Maduro believes the slowdown is the result of economic policies adopted since the end of 2018 when tight controls on the economy were eased down, while analysts claim that the de-facto dollarization, the reduction of the fiscal deficit, and the stability in the dollar rate ensuing the constant injection of funds by the State in the exchange market have influenced the deceleration.
The opposition-linked Venezuelan Finance Observatory questions the official figures and places the March index at 10.5%. The March 2022 inflation figure of 1.4% is an absurdity (...)
Do not believe this figure from an institution that has hidden the data and publishes what is convenient for it,” said economist José Guerra, a scholar at the observatory.