August 30, 2009 / 3:01 PM / 9 years ago

Venezuela central bank chief sees inflation at 26 pct

CARACAS, Aug 30 (Reuters) - The president of Venezuela’s central bank said on Sunday he expected the country’s inflation rate to slow to 26 percent by the end of the year.

Nelson Merentes said in an interview broadcast by Televen that the bank was aiming to bring inflation down to single-digit levels by 2012.

The government has previously forecast that inflation would reach 28 percent this year. In the 12 months through July, consumer prices rose 26.2 percent.

Merentes also said he expected the economy to return to growth by the end of the year. Venezuela’s gross domestic product contracted for the first time in five years in the second quarter. (Reporting by Robert Campbell, editing by Maureen Bavdek)

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