Russian consumer price rises slow in first weeks of January

Vendors sell vegetables and other foodstuffs in a street in Izhevsk

MOSCOW (Reuters) -Consumer price inflation in Russia slowed to 0.15% in the week of Jan. 10-16, compared with 0.24% in the first nine days of the year, the Rosstat federal statistics service said on Wednesday.

Russia's annual inflation rate also slowed down to 11.57% as of Jan. 16 from 11.65% a week earlier, the economy ministry said.

Inflation in Russia has remained subdued in recent months due to weak consumer demand, which has been exacerbated by Russia's mobilisation campaign.

The rise in fruit and vegetable prices slowed to an average of 3.0% last week from 6.5% in the first nine days of the year, while city bus and tram fares rose by 0.5%.

Economy Minister Maxim Reshetnikov said last week that Russia's annual rate of inflation had come in at 11.9% for 2022. He said he saw it falling substantially by the end of the first quarter, with the second quarter figure below 4%.

The central bank forecasts consumer price growth in 2023 in the range of 5-7%.

(Reporting by Reuters; Editing by Kevin Liffey)