UPDATE 1-Georgia's central bank hikes key refinancing rate to curb inflation

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TBILISI, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Georgia’s central bank raised its key refinancing rate to 8.50% from 7.50% on Wednesday amid rising inflation.

The central bank had raised the rate twice last month as annual inflation exceeded the 3% target.

Annual inflation in September stood at 6.4%, up from 2.7% in September 2018 and from 4.9% in the preceding month. Month by month, prices rose 1.7% in September after rising 0.8% in August.

“The monetary policy committee’s further decisions will depend on how quickly inflationary pressure will be eliminated,” the bank said in a statement on Wednesday.

The central bank’s governor told Reuters last month that it planned to further tighten monetary policy if inflation caused by the fall of its currency against the U.S. dollar persists.

The bank is due to hold its next policy meeting on December 11. (Reporting by Margarita Antidze; editing by)