» 07/16/2012, 00.00
Inflation drops but late monsoons threaten India's food sector
In June, inflation stood at 7.25 per cent against 7.55 in May. Unsatisfied, India's central bank cannot anticipate whether interest rates will be cut as the government would like to see to boost the economy. Food sector faces crisis as late monsoons threaten harvest, higher prices.
Mumbai (AsiaNews/Agencies) - India's headline inflation fell to 7.25 per
cent in June, the lowest in five months. However, the Reserve (Central) Bank of
India (RBI) is not satisfied because food inflation continued to fuel the
headline number. For this reason, it is likely to keep interest rates
unchanged. A weaker-than-normal monsoon is also raising concerns about a
possible harvest shortfall that could contribute to the continuing rise in food
In May, inflation reached 7.55 per cent against
7.5 in April (revised from 7.23). At 7.69 per cent, March recorded the worst
level. In January and February, it was 6.55 and 7.36 respectively. However, food inflation rose at a faster rate, 10.81
per cent in June, against 10.74 in May.
Only at the end of July will the RBI know
whether to cut interest rates and meet the government's request. In April, the RBI had already cut its key interest
rate by 50 basis points, or 0.5 per cent, more
than the widely-expected 25 bps.
At present, predicting what the RBI might is
impossible. Back in April, the central bank had added a number of caveats for
future cuts, saying they would rely entirely on what the inflation rate would
Unusual weather conditions are not helping the
economy. Late monsoon rains, which usually come in June, could damage grain and
Although India has a significant stockpile of food
grains and cereals, it is hobbled by a weak storage and distribution system
that often causes grains to rot instead of reaching the intended recipients. This
means that storage costs tend to be high.
People dying of hunger in India, but millions of bags of grains rot outside
The archbishop of Bhopal slams the waste of surplus food due to poor storage management. More than 90 per cent of reserves set aside in the last few months can now only be used as fertiliser.
Indian Jesuit warns that people are starving as governments do nothing
Fr Jyothi SJ is the convener of the Right to Food and Work network in West Bengal, an organisation of NGOs that launched an awareness campaign last Saturday to get the State government to activate the existing food security legislation for the State’s poor. “We want the government to wake up” and realise food shortages “will inevitably turn into famine” in the coming months. South Asia is home to half of the world’s undernourished, but one would not know it from Indian media.
After claiming 1,700 victims deadly heat wave ends in India
Pre-monsoon rains are expected by the end of this week. Varanasi Priest speaks of "human tragedy", which mainly hit the poorest in the country. Because of the high temperatures, many are too weak to work and also risk of starvation.
India floods leave at least 850 dead
PIME missionary in Mumbai: "For days without drinking water, electricity or outside contacts: we do not know how they will help us and how to help". The Church of Our Lady in Veilankanni is safe.
China grain harvest is at risk from worst drought in recent years
According to official figures of 12.73 million hectares of crops is parched. But unofficial sources describe a far worse situation worse. Major grain producing regions are hardest hit. The government fears social protests by poor farmers who risk losing everything.
Pope Francis tells young people that “genuine love” is not a “soap opera”, but Christians’ real identity card
In his homily for the Jubilee of Teens, Pope Francis asked questions and gave answers to the 70,000 present. Stressing the great ideal of love as giving oneself “without being possessive”, he noted that freedom is “being able to choose the good”. He warned young people “who dare not dream,” telling them that “If you do not dream at your age, you are already ready for retirement”. He also received funds raised for the Ukraine, and appealed for the release of bishops and the priests held in Syria.
Odd alliance between the US and Iranian fundamentalists
Washington is still preventing the use of US dollars in transactions with Iranian banks, preventing business with the outside world in spite of the nuclear deal. This way, the US is helping Khamenei and the Revolutionary Guards, who want to torpedo the agreement in order to maintain their hold on power. Meanwhile, most Iranians hold down two or three jobs just to make ends meet. An unstable and bellicose Iran is a boon for arms sales. A report follows.
29/04/2016 NORTH KOREA- USA
AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!
AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.