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Zimbabwe Consumer Prices Up 6.1 Percent in Past Year; IMF Voices Concern

The rebranded Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency said prices rose 0.3 percent in May following 0.1 percent in April, led by rising food and transport costs

Zimbabwean consumer prices rose 6.1 percent in the 12 months through May, a significant rise from 4.8 percent in the year through April, the rebranded Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency said Tuesday.

The agency said prices rose 0.3 percent in May having picked up 0.1 percent in April. The agency attributed the gain to rising food and transport prices. The report came as the International Monetary Fund urged Harare to moderate public spending and hold down public and private wages to avoid triggering another inflationary surge.

Economist Callisto Jokonya, a former president of the Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries, told VOA Studio 7 reporter Jonga Kandemiiri that to fuel growth the government needs to sell diamonds and other minerals.

Masimba Kuchera, deputy chairman of the Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development, told reporter Ntungamili Nkomo that Zimbabwe must rein in spending to prevent inflation from getting out of hand.