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Nawroz cancelation: Balkh businesses suffer 90pc loss

Nawroz cancelation: Balkh businesses suffer 90pc loss

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Mar 24, 2020 - 16:46

MAZAR-I-SHARIF (Pajhwok): The Chamber of Commerce, shopkeepers and owners of hotels in northern Balkh province on Tuesday claimed suffering 90 percent loss in businesses due to cancelation of Nawroz festivities this year.

Events celebrating Nawroz (New Year) festival had been cancelled in Balkh province in compliance with a presidential decree.

Balkh chamber of commerce department head ArashYounisi told Pajhwok Afghan News the cancellation of Nawroz (New Year) celebrations caused 90 percent losses to traders this year as compared to the previous years.

According to him, each year thousands of people were visiting Balkh for the celebration of Nawroz, with local residents earning more compared to other seasons of the year.

He said this year no one visited the province and businesses had been stopped. “Each year restaurants were full of people and people would shop a lot but this year no one visited the province, thus traders incurred 90percent loss compared to the past years.”

Izzatullah, a dry fruit shopkeeper in Mazar-i-Sharif City, the provincial capital, told Pajhwok that they had good bazaar starting 10 days ahead of Nawroz for 40 days.

He said they had made enough preparations as previously, but market was not good as per their expectations this year.

He said, “People from other provinces did not come and residents of Balkh also stayed home aimed coronavirus fears.”

Abdul Saboor, another owner of a hotel, told Pajhwok that all his hotel’s room were empty as guests did not come to the province this year.

He said in the past people rented one room for 24 hours against 2,500 afghanis. “Nawroz was a great income source for us but unfortunately this year the festival was cancelled due to the fear of coronavirus.”

Meanwhile, the Chamber of Commerce department asked traders to avoid price hike.

Pk/ma

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