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Fuel prices soar in Ethiopia as subsidies cut

Fuel prices soar in Ethiopia as subsidies cut.

Fuel prices soared in Ethiopia on Wednesday after the government reduced subsidies, adding to economic hardship for people already struggling with high inflation.

The price of petrol at the pump jumped almost 30 percent to 48.83 biir (about 94 US cents) while diesel went up almost 40 percent to 49.02 birr under the new price regime that will run to August 6, the trade ministry said.

The federal government plans to lift fuel subsidies progressively, according to the Addis Tribune business newspaper.

Prices of fuel, food and other basic goods have rocketed globally because of the Ukraine war, badly hitting vulnerable countries in Africa and elsewhere.

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The trade ministry said the cost of fuel for Ethiopian consumers should be almost double if it was calculated on current global prices.

“But considering the state the country is in, the government is covering 75 percent of the (price) difference while it was decided that the remaining 25 percent would be transferred to consumers,” it said.

The country of more than 110 million people has seen inflation hovering at around 35 percent over the past six months, with food prices in particular registering a sharp rise.

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