Page last updated at 18:23 GMT, Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Zimbabwe inflation hits 100,000%

Zimbabwe dollar
Zimbabwe's central bank introduced a $10m note in January

Zimbabwe's soaring inflation hit an annual rate of 100,000% in January, new official figures show.

Ongoing shortages of food and fuel helped drive inflation from December's rate of 66,212%.

Government officials say the shortages make it hard to work out inflation with any degree of accuracy.

About 80% of the country's population lives in poverty and it is estimated that three million people have left the country for a new life in South Africa.

New notes

The economy has been in trouble for seven years, with supplies of basic foodstuffs, cooking oil and petrol all running low.

The central bank has introduced new banknotes to cope with the spiralling prices.

Last month it issued a 10 million Zimbabwe dollar note.

President Robert Mugabe stands for re-election next month.

He faces a challenge from his former finance minister, Simba Makoni and the leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic change, Morgan Tsvangirai.

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Zimbabwe's ten million dollar note


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