The country produces a very limited quantity of cereals. The main staple foods are sweet potatoes, cassava and plantains. With a population of about 900 000 people, the total cereal import requirement for 2017, mostly supplied through commercial channels, is forecast at about 44 000 tonnes, including 22 000 tonnes of rice and 22 000 tonnes of wheat.
Due to rapidly rising domestic demand since the oil boom began in the mid-1990s, inflation in Equatorial Guinea has been higher than in other countries of the Franc Zone in recent years, peaking at 6 percent in 2009. Subsequently, the rates of inflation declined, albeit irregularly, due to the economic recession and declining oil and food prices. According to the International Monetary Fund, the average inflation rates were 1.7 percent in 2015, about 1.5 percent in 2016 and are forecast to remain at 1.5 percent in 2017.