Turkey's inflation rises to 67.1% in February

The Turkish central bank held its key interest rate at 45 percent last month, pausing after eight straight increases aimed at taming consumer prices that had remained stable at 64.9 percent in January.
An Istanbul skyline picture taken from Bosfo bridge on July 20, 2016. (Photo: AFP)
An Istanbul skyline picture taken from Bosfo bridge on July 20, 2016. (Photo: AFP)

ISTANBUL, TURKEY (AFP) - Turkey's annual inflation rose again in February, reaching 67.1 percent despite a string of interest rate hikes, official data showed on Monday.

The Turkish central bank held its key interest rate at 45 percent last month, pausing after eight straight increases aimed at taming consumer prices that had remained stable at 64.9 percent in January.

On a monthly basis, inflation rose 4.5 percent in February, slower than the 6.7 percent rise logged in January. 

Inflation remains a pressing issue for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government ahead of local elections in March.

His ruling AKP party is trying to win back control of major cities, including Istanbul and the capital Ankara, currently held by the main opposition party.

Erdogan said Sunday that anti-inflation policies "will begin to be felt in practice towards the end of the year".