The World : Peru Doubles Food Prices
The Peruvian government of President Alan Garcia, fighting to forestall economic disaster, announced it is doubling prices for basic foods and taking other measures to cope with an annual inflation rate of more than 1,700%. The official gazette, El Peruano, decreed increases of 60% to 117% for such subsidized foods as bread, sugar and rice. Gasoline prices were raised 62%. Authorities also devalued the currency, the inti, by 29%. It is the third time in five months the embattled center-left Garcia government has raised food and gas prices to keep the treasury afloat. To compensate for the price hikes, authorities increased the minimum monthly wage for about 2 million workers to $40.