Prices of staple food items in Pakistan increased by 17% ahead of Ramazan, making food much more expensive compared to last year, said a press release issued by Oxfam. In comparison, food inflation in Bangladesh was recorded at 13.4% in July 2011.
Rising food prices and a lack of political will has affected how millions of people across the world have been breaking their fasts during Ramazan, the release said.
In Pakistan, the price of vegetables, wheat, rice, chicken and milk rose by 14, 3, 3, 19 and 1 per cent respectively in July, compared to last year. As opposed to other countries, Pakistan has enough stocks of staple food but the wavering economy and rising inflation have pushed tens of millions below the poverty line, the press release said.
With 925 million people going hungry every day, and food prices predicted to more than double within the next twenty years, the food crisis is deepening, Oxfam said.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 26th, 2011.