• Idlib

  • Tuesday, April 9, 2024 at 3:37 PM
    Last Update : Tuesday, April 16, 2024 at 5:30 AM

High Prices of Eid Clothes Overwhelm Syrians in Idlib

(AWP) -  With Eid al-Fitr fast approaching, people in the province of Idlib, northwestern Syria, find themselves facing a wave of price hikes coupled with a decline in the exchange rate of the Turkish lira, which locals in the province use, against the U.S. dollar, as well as the low wages of workers and employees.

Purchasing Eid clothes for children has become a real challenge for ordinary families in Idlib. For Mohamed al-Qorany, a teacher, Eid clothes have become a luxury because he says he can barely afford to pay his rent and feed his family.

However, he did take his children to choose clothes from the street stalls, where prices are much lower than in shops.

Al-Qorany complained, “I expected clothes prices to be lower, especially with Eid al-Fitr approaching. A pair of trousers costs 200 Turkish liras, which is very expensive. There is a significant difference between the [U.S.] dollar exchange rate and the price of goods. If the exchange rate increases by 2%, the prices of goods increase by 50%.”

Economic pressures in Idlib have been mounting as incomes are decreasing and unemployment rates rising, making it harder for families to make ends meet.

Abu Moussa al-Shamy, an owner of a clothes shop, said, “Eid al-Fitr has lost its joy. People do not have enough disposable income. In the past, a person who had a son in Turkey or Europe used to receive money from him, but no one sends anything anymore.”

He remarked, “Thirteen years have passed since the revolution. The world is sick and tired of us. They sent us money a couple of times, but now no one is willing to give us anything.”

Another trader, Bashar al-Himsy, said “God help anyone with four or five children,” and pointed out that it would cost at least 1,500 Turkish liras to buy just one set of clothes.

He added, “A worker’s daily wage is between 100 to 150 Turkish liras, so this year the markets are not active.”

Jamil al-Ahmad, who came from the Idlib countryside to the city to buy clothes for his children, commented on the difference between this year’s prices compared to last year.

“This year the prices have doubled, so buying items for only one of my children is costing at least $30-$40.”