‘RBI may go for further monetary tightening measures to control inflation’

PTI New Delhi | Updated on February 14, 2011 Published on February 14, 2011

Dr C. Rangarajan, Chairman, Economic Advisory Council to The Prime Minister. (file photo)   -  The Hindu

The Reserve Bank of India may take further monetary tightening measures to tame inflation which stood at 8.23 per cent in January, the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council has said.

“RBI will have to take a view looking at the level of inflation. It is still at an uncomfortably high level. Some action, continued action, by the RBI (to tighten monetary policy) may be required,” the PMEAC Chairman, Dr C. Rangarajan, told PTI today.

His remarks came even as inflation, though down marginally from December, continued to be above 8 per cent, a level where it has stood at since January 2010.

The RBI has already hiked its short-term lending and borrowing rates by 25 basis points during its third quarterly review last month to tame inflationary pressure.

The apex bank has also termed inflation control as its topmost priority.

About the fall in inflation numbers in January, Dr Rangarajan said: “In some ways, it was expected. We can see inflation falling to 7 per cent by March.”

At last month’s review, the central bank had revised its inflation estimate to 7 per cent by March-end from the earlier 5.5 per cent.

The WPI inflation declined marginally to 8.23 per cent in January from 8.43 per cent in the previous month, as the prices of certain commodities like wheat, pulses and sugar eased, although essential items like onions and other vegetables continued to remain firm.

Besides food items, many experts have also voiced concern over global crude prices which have crossed a 28-month high at $102 per barrel on account of political instability in West Asia, especially Egypt.

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Published on February 14, 2011
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