Eid El-Adha: Why There Is Food Inflation – Buhari

File photo of a market

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has blamed the increase in the prices of food on flooding, middlemen, and insecurity, pledging to tackle the ravaging hardship in the country.

The President stated this on Monday while felicitating with Muslims on the occasion of the Eid El-Adha, calling for more patience among Nigerians.

Buhari in a statement issued by his spokesman, Garba Shehu, noted that these, as well as the COVID-19, have ballooned the prices of food items in Nigeria.

“Apart from the destruction caused to rice farms by floods, middlemen have also taken advantage of the local rice production to exploit fellow Nigerians, thereby undermining our goal of supporting local food production at affordable prices,” the President was quoted as saying.

“COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the economies of all countries, including Nigeria, in addition to the fact that floods have caused large scale destruction to agricultural farmlands, thereby impacting negatively on our efforts to boost local production in line with our policy to drastically reduce food importation.

“No government in our recent history has invested as heavily as we are doing to promote local production of about 20 other commodities, through the provision of loans and several other forms of support to our farmers.”

READ ALSO: Nigeria’s Inflation Rate Declines To 17.75%

President Muhammadu Buhari speaks in Katsina State on July 19, 2021. Credit: State House

 

The Nigerian leader assured that as an elected President who enjoys the goodwill of the ordinary people, he would continue “to bring relief to Nigerians, including making fertilizer available at affordable prices to our farmers.”

While lamenting the deteriorating insecurity in the country,  Buhari lamented that it “has produced severe and adverse effects on agriculture because farmers are prevented from accessing their farms by bandits and terrorists.

“Let me also use this opportunity to reassure Nigerians that we are taking measures to address our security challenges. We have started taking delivery of fighter aircraft and other necessary military equipment and hardware to improve the capacity of our security forces to confront terrorism and banditry.”

 

 

Crude Prices Rise Above $80 For First Time Since 2014

Indigenous Firms Plan To Increase Oil Output
File photo

 

Benchmark oil contract Brent North Sea briefly surged above $80 a barrel Thursday, hitting its highest level since late 2014 and extending a recent run higher fuelled by tight supply concerns.

European stock markets meanwhile rose as the euro weakened against the dollar, but Wall Street pulled back in early New York trading.

Brent North Sea crude for delivery in July jumped to $80.18 a barrel in the late European morning — the highest level since November 2014 — after a gain of more than one percent compared with Wednesday’s close.

By mid-afternoon, it had pulled back to $79.65, still 37 cents higher from Wednesday.

Global oil supplies could be hit by President Donald Trump’s decision to pull the United States out of the Iran nuclear deal, and also by falling production in crisis-hit Venezuela, the International Energy Agency said on Wednesday.

Iran, Venezuela behind oil’s rise 

“The catalyst for the latest move appears to be more concerns about the state of the supply and demand balance and OPEC’s apparent unwillingness to do anything about it even as Iran faces fresh sanctions and Venezuelan production is pressured,” said Greg McKenna, an analyst at AxiTrader.

Iran has meanwhile said that Chinese state-owned oil company CNPC will replace Total on a major gas field project in the country should the French energy giant pull out over renewed US sanctions against Tehran.

Prior to Thursday’s oil-price rally, crude futures had already been rising strongly thanks to steady demand growth and a landmark deal by oil-producing countries, both inside and outside the OPEC cartel, to lower output.

Oil’s rise could meanwhile further push up inflation, impacting growth by quickening the pace of expected rises for interest rates.

“Clearly the recent rise in oil prices is going to pose a problem for some central banks due to the temporary impact it will have on the inflation data, especially when you consider that in the past year, Brent crude prices are up more than 50 percent,” Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at Oanda trading group, told AFP.

“The biggest test may come in countries that are already seeing the target or above target inflation like the UK.”

With markets expecting inflation to pick up the pace, including for other reasons such as improved wages growth, 10-year US bond yields have hit seven-year highs, adding to expectations of a series of US rate hikes this year.

“The ghost of the 10-year Treasury yield has returned to spook markets again, with equities failing to make much progress as attention fixates on the key global benchmark,” Chris Beauchamp, a chief market analyst at IG trading group, said Thursday.

Dollar firms 

On currency markets, the dollar benefited from bets on higher US rates, keeping it around multi-month highs against its major peers.

The greenback is holding at 2018 highs against the euro, also as horse-trading to form an Italian government fuels uncertainty in one of the eurozone’s biggest economies.

A string of disappointing data on the economic bloc is also bearing down on the single currency.

 Key figures around 1335 GMT 

Oil – Brent North Sea: UP 37 cents at $79.65 per barrel

Oil – West Texas Intermediate: UP 39 cents at $71.88 per barrel

London – FTSE 100: UP 0.4 percent at 7,766.76 points

Frankfurt – DAX 30: UP 0.7 percent at 13,084.06

Paris – CAC 40: UP 0.6 percent at 5,601.00

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.5 percent at 3,580.19

New York – Dow: DOWN 0.2 percent at 24,722.43

Tokyo – Nikkei 225: UP 0.5 percent at 22,838.37 (close)

Hong Kong – Hang Seng: DOWN 0.5 percent at 30,942.15 (close)

Shanghai – Composite: DOWN 0.5 percent at 3,154.28 (close)

Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.1797 from $1.1808 at 2100 GMT

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3496 from $1.3491

Dollar/yen: UP at 110.73 yen from 110.34 yen

AFP