“The situation is deplorable”, says priest about basic food and gas prices

posted on 06/19/2022 07:01 / updated on 06/19/2022 07:21

  (credit: Vinícius Cardoso Vieira/Esp. CB/DA Press)

(credit: Vinícius Cardoso Vieira/Esp. CB/DA Press)

With the announcement of a new increase in Petrobras fuel prices in the last week, the expectation of greater economic tightening for the population grows. The price of the basic food basket recorded in May 2022, for example, is up to 23.94% higher than in the same month last year, while cooking gas increased by 9.8% this year alone and 324.1% since the beginning of the adoption of the international price parity (PPI) of fuels by Petrobras, in 2016.

The data are from a survey by the Inter-Union Department of Statistics and Socioeconomic Studies (Dieese) carried out at the request of the Unique Federation of Oil Workers (FUP), which also shows that, between October 2016 and June 2022, diesel in refineries rose 221, 6.%, while gasoline increased by 170.6% in the same period. In contrast, the minimum wage increased by 37.7%.

“(The price of fuel) It had an impact, as many people are unable to buy gas. Many cook with ethane or firewood. The situation is deplorable, as you do not have the basics and essentials to live. gas and, for the most part, not even food to survive”, says Catholic priest Júlio Lancellotti, who carries out assistance work in downtown São Paulo.

The scenario described by the priest, recognized worldwide for his social works, is one of the most perverse characteristics of inflation, which is not expected to give way anytime soon. “Products such as cooking gas, gasoline and diesel oil are what we economists call items with inelastic demand, that is, they are difficult to replace. In this case, there is very little that workers can do in the short term”, he explains. Professor Giácomo Balbinotto, from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS).

One of the most traditional indicators of the Brazilian economy, the price of the basic food basket continues to rise. In the period of one year, until last May, the increase was felt in all the capitals, with variations that oscillated between 13.17%, in Vitória and 23.94%, in Recife.

Only between April and May, the biggest increases in the prices of the basic food basket were registered in Belém (2.99%), Recife (2.26%) and Salvador (0.53%). São Paulo was the capital where the set of basic foods had the highest cost in May, R$ 777.93. Florianópolis had a basic food basket of R$ 772.07; Porto Alegre, of R$ 768.76; and Rio de Janeiro, of R$ 723.55.

The good news is that there was also a retraction from one month to another. Significant declines occurred in Campo Grande (-7.30%), Brasília (-6.10%), Rio de Janeiro (-5.84%) and Belo Horizonte (-5.81%). The lowest average values ​​were recorded in Aracaju (R$ 548.38) and João Pessoa (R$ 567.67).

In contrast, according to Dieese’s calculations, in May 2022, the minimum wage necessary for the income of a family of four should be equivalent to R$ 6,535.40, or 5.39 times the current minimum, of R$ 1,212.00.

“This is the main characteristic of inflation. The effects are perverse on the purchasing power of workers. In addition, we feel the weight in many of the products derived from oil, which impacts on other products forward or backward”, says Balbinotto.


Conducted with 3 thousand people, between May 21 and June 2, in the five regions of the country, the Radar Febraban survey brings more evidence of the problem.

At least 93% of respondents said that the price of products “increased a lot compared to the beginning of the year”, and eight in 10 respondents (78%) said that food consumption was the most impacted by inflation. Worse still, more than half of respondents, or 51%, believe that family finances will not recover until after 2022 or that this is out of the question.

The number of pessimists is greater when it comes to the recovery of the country’s economy, with a contingent of 77%. In line with this sentiment, 66% also have negative expectations regarding the country’s growth.

About Yadunandan Singh

Born in 1992, Yadunandan approaches the world of video games thanks to two sacred monsters like Diablo and above all Sonic, strictly in the Sega Saturn version. Ranging between consoles and PCs, he is particularly fond of platform titles and RPGs, not disdaining all other genres and moving in the constant search for the perfect balance between narration and interactivity.

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