Paraguay’s suffering as inflation pushes import costs to 16-year highs

Uptrend in price Imported goods The expansion into Paraguay continues with no end in sight.

Inflation rates on imports were 9.3% higher in 2021 than the same record period in 2020, the highest level since 2005. Paraguay Central Bank..

“Forget about trying to buy something [imported] “Fruits and vegetables,” Ramona Benitez told The Epoch Times.

Benitez lives in Encarnacion, Paraguay, a city along the Parana River.

She said the city was deficient in things like fruits and vegetables for months.

“It’s an ugly situation that has become even more difficult due to unemployment,” Benitez said.

Like many, Benitez lost his job as a teacher Chinese Communist Party (CCP) virus Blocked in 2020.The unemployment rate in Paraguay 7.9 percent In the first quarter of 2020, First quarter 2021.

In Asuncion, resident Silva Torres told The Epoch Times: [gas] The price goes through the roof. “

Torres said he couldn’t even buy fish in the country’s capital recently because of the serious shortage that is causing inflation.

“Beef is also very expensive,” Torres said.

Gasoline prices are rising in countries that import all petroleum-derived fuels four times In 2021 due to global demand as the economy continues to revitalize.

Torres says it will last Drought situation In this region, container vessels are affecting the ability of container vessels to navigate rivers, and imports and exports have almost stopped.

Drought also hit the locals Fishing is hardIncome along the Paraguay and Parana rivers is affecting small towns that rely on the maritime industry.

When asked if inflation was noticeable in supermarkets, Torres replied. We feel it very much in the market. “

The Paraguay and Parana rivers are very important Importance Trade and commerce between the “Southern Corn” countries of Paraguay, Brazil, Bolivia and Argentina, which are participating members of the South American trade bloc Mercosur.

The trend of low water levels in rivers began three years ago and reached a record. Low price In 2021.

Transportation of large vessels in these situations has been difficult or impossible in some areas.

Hydrology engineer José Luis Ávila It pointed out Historically low water levels are unusual during this period, with no significant rainfall recorded near the Paraguay or Parana Rivers. As a result, where there is usually a lot of shipping traffic, the depth is only 11 inches.

Economic Consulting Group MENTU Said The high cost of sea shipping, coupled with rising international fuel prices and delays in shipping, is a major driver of the country’s historic high inflation.

“This could limit the availability of imports in demand at the end of the year festival, which is the time of maximum consumption,” the organization said. Said You can find it in the Financial Pulse section of their website.

Autumn Spredemann