Turkey’s annual inflation rate jumped to a 24-year high of 73.5% in May, fuelled by the war in Ukraine, rising energy prices and a tumbling lira — though the figure was slightly lower than economists had feared. Inflation has surged since last autumn, when the lira slumped after the central bank launched a 500 basis-point easing cycle sought by President Tayyip Erdogan. The latest figure surpassed the 73.2% touched in 2002 and is the highest since October 1998, when annual inflation was 76.6% and Turkey was battling to end a decade of chronically high inflation. Nevertheless, the consensus forecast was for annual inflation to rise to 76.55%. Month-on-month consumer prices rose 2.98%, the Turkish Statistical Institute (TUIK) said on Friday, compared to a Reuters poll forecast of 4.8%. Transport and food costs have soared by 108% and 92% respectively.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 4th, 2022.