Russian central bank says high inflation a disaster
Russia's central bank chief warned Monday that record-breaking inflation was a "real disaster" for the country and urged the government to take action.
Inflation in Russia has been rising steeply for months, reaching 8.1 per cent year-on-year in October -- a record since 2016 and more than double the central bank's target.
Like around the world, food prices have skyrocketed, in a blow for a population with little savings.
"Inflation is a real disaster that makes people poorer," central bank chief Elvira Nabiullina said in an address to Russia's lower house of parliament.
Nabiullina, who is one of the few officials occasionally critical of government policies that are typically ordered by President Vladimir Putin, said that "high inflation really destroys prosperity".
"Inflation should return to the four percent target at any cost," she told the State Duma.
The respected central bank chief has been sounding the alarm about rising inflation for months, raising the key rate -- currently at 7.5 per cent -- several times this year to curb skyrocketing prices.
She has been critical of government measures to cap prices of certain goods on Putin's orders, and on Monday once again repeated her stance, deeming the move harmful to the economy.
Sheppherded by Nabiullina, Russia's central bank has previously stopped runaway inflation and dragged the country out of economic crises.
Drastically raising the key rate to 17 per cent in 2014, the central bank successfully curbed inflation after Russia was faced with a historical collapse of the ruble due to sanctions imposed over Moscow's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine and a drop in oil prices.