Zimbabwe's 12-month inflation rate jumped to a new record high of 913.6% for March, officials said on Friday, surpassing a central bank forecast as the Southern African country's economic woes continue.From Bloomberg
"The year-on-year rate of inflation in March 2006 was 913.6%, gaining 131.6 percentage points on the February rate of 782%," said Moffat Nyoni, acting director of the Central Statistical Office.
"This means that on average goods and services normally purchased by households for final use in Zimbabwe were about ten times as expensive in March 2006 as they had been 12 months before, in March 2005," he told a news conference in the capital.
Nyoni said that goods and services priced at Z$100 000a year ago would now cost more than Z$1-million.
Zimbabwe, which has the world's fourth- worst AIDS epidemic, overtook Swaziland as the country with the world's lowest life expectancy, data released today by the World Health organization showed.
In 2004, Zimbabweans could expect to live to the age of 36, with life expectancy for men at 37 and women at 34, the WHO said in its 2006 annual report released on its Web site. That compared with overall life expectancy of 37 in 2003. Life expectancy in Swaziland, where a greater proportion of the people are infected with the HIV virus that causes AIDS, rose to 37 from 35.