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KIEV, February 5. /TASS/. Bread prices in Ukraine may go up by 14% in February following the rise in flour prices, Alexander Vasilchenko, director general of Ukrkhlebprom Association of Baking Industry Companies, told Ukraine’s Vesti periodical published on Thursday.
"Another leap in bread prices is expected in February as we have run out of cheap flour," he said.
Among reasons behind the price rise, he cited a steadfast devaluation of the national currency hryvnia /which sends rising domestic wheat prices depending on global prices/and growing prices on raw materials, logistics services and electricity. "Bakers have all economic reasons to raise prices by 14% Flour prices have jumped by 28% in the past three months, and flour accounts for a half of the cost," he noted.
According to the Vesti, gradual price rise has already started. By the end of February, bread prices may rise up to ten hryvnias /0.61 U.S. dollars/. As of January 20, a loaf of rye or wheat bread weighing 600-700 grams was sold at from 6.75 to 7.03 hryvnias. By January 30, the prices went up to 6.85-7.22 hryvnias.
Bread market players hope the government, in particular the Agrarian Fund, will be able to bring to the market cheaper flour from its reserves, which was bought at lower prices last year. Experts however forecast that the fund’s reserves will get more expensive too.