The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.

Prices still high; even on the rise despite officials’ efforts, Kabul citizens

At the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, officials at the Kabul Municipality, vowed to bring down the prices or at least make them affordable for the citizens with low income, but less have been done in this field, Kabul citizens complained.
Even, the prices of primary foodstuff have sky-rocketed recently in the capital markets, they complained.
Capital residents, in telephone conversations with The Kabul Times said that they expected the prices decline in accordance to the organs concerned, particularly the municipality, following the arrival of the fasting days.
“We expected food prices go down or at least become reasonable in order the citizens could pay for, but, like previous years, the prices have risen, and nothing tangible has so far been done by the organs concerned in this respect,” Farhad, a Kabul resident told The Kabul Times.
He said during the previous government, authorities vowed to decline the prices, especially when the fasting month arrives, but failed to fulfill their promises, while the citizens hoped the prices decrease, after the return of the Islamic Emirate, but disappointed, when witnessed food items are still high even rising.
Another Kabul resident Mohammad said the prices’ rise mostly comes from the incompetency of the officials and their failure to pay attention to the instructions of the Islamic Emirate leaderships.
“All services and amenities should be done for the people during the fasting month and the cabinet of the Islamic Emirate resolved the issue during various meetings, but the low-ranking officials are not paying attention to the instructions and the traders are apparently rising the prices for their own interest,” he complained.
They asked the Islamic Emirate, in particular, the Kabul Municipality to control the prices in the market and do its best for the poverty-stricken people not be harmed.
He said in other countries, the prices of food items reduce to respect the holy fasting days and help people of low-income to support their families. “But, in our country; Afghanistan, both officials and businessmen remain incompetent, helping the prices go up,” he regretted.
Few weeks ago, the food prices’ increases considered a result of rise in foreign currencies; particularly that of U.S. dollar against Afghanis, but dollar has eye-catchingly fallen, while there is no news of decline in food prices in the country’s markets, Mohammad said.
Nowadays, a bag of flour is sold in 2,450 Afghanis, 16 liters of cooking oil in 2800, 7 kg sugar in 420 Afghanis and a bag of rice costs 2600 Afghanis. “All food items are expensive and we cannot afford them, as we cannot earn more than 100 Afghanis a day,” he said.
“How can a street vendor pay for. We ask the Islamic Emirate to pay attention to the prices and control them,” said Abdul Rasul, a Kabul resident.
Some people who work in the streets say that they cannot afford food as they have no jobs and money.
This is while, the Kabul municipality says it distributed price lists to the shopkeepers across the city, in order to control goods’ prices in the markets, but some violate the rule.
It said shopkeepers’ failure to obey the announced rule on the prices, following a decree issued by the Prime Minister of the Islamic Emirate, would be introduced to the judiciary institutions.
“Also, the shopkeepers violating the rule would be fined and their shops locked,” a statement from the municipality said.
Meanwhile, shopkeepers said the reason behind hike of price was the decision of the importers of the goods.
“They [the importers] sell goods on us with high prices and how can we sell them lower. We lose if buy higher and sell lower, same the customers suffer losses, when buying things from us,” said a Kabul shopkeeper on anonymity asking the government to prevent inflation of domestic currency and bringing stability in the prices.
Afghanistan imports most of its primary food items from abroad, particularly from the neighboring countries of Pakistan and Iran.

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The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.