NORTH AND EAST SYRIA – In an interview with SuroyoFM on Wednesday, Mr. Abdul Baset Kuti, Co-Chair of the Supply and Consumer Protection Directorate of Democratic Autonomous Administration (DAA) in Gozarto (Jazira) Region, discussed the high prices of materials and goods in the region and the steps taken by the Directorate to lower prices and control the market.
Mr. Kuti stated that the significant rise in the price of materials is due to the weakening of the Syrian Pound relative to the U.S. Dollar.
Kuti also remarked that the preventive measures taken by the DAA to reduce the spread of COVID-19 has had a negative effect on the economy generally. While demand for many goods is low due to work stoppages, restrictions on transportation have led to inflation of basic good prices.
The majority of food entering Gozarto Region comes from other parts of Syria or from across the border with Iraq, whose economy, while experiencing its own difficulties, hasn’t been ground down by nearly a decade of destructive civil war.
To help reduce the price of food, the Directorate will subsidize the sale of local produce in the region’s markets, providing an added boost to the local farmers and agricultural collectives.
The role of the Directorate, according to Kuti, is to help manage market prices and to hold price gougers and monopolists accountable to the public. Recently, the Directorate released a list of market prices for staple goods to prevent inflated pricing of food during the COVID-19 curfew imposed by the DAA in March.