After the Central Bank switched to a floating currency regime last December, prices for staple goods skyrocketed. Merchants worry about the lack of customers, while customers are not happy about the price hikes.
To pass the time, some sellers at the grocery bazaar at the 3
district were seen playing domino since they have no customers to serve. “Life wasn’t easy anyway, however, once the dollar rose in value, things got much harder for us. We now depend on dollar fluctuation,” one of them said.
With fluctuating prices and unsettling uncertainty, traders have to adjust accordingly. Domino is the only thing that keeps their mind off worries.
“At the moment, the prices for goods go up and down, and we have to adjust accordingly,” he added. “There is no business. Therefore, we play domino to take our minds off these matters. Otherwise, we would go nuts from over-thinking. Otherwise, we might realize the need to do something. The best thing we can now do is keep our minds busy. We don’t know what else to do.”
A senior lady, a grandmother who has to work at her advanced age, has the same problem. Once she heard that the dollar rose in value again, she exclaimed: “Oh God, what are we to do next?!”
“After the so-called Olympics were held, business completely dried out,” she says. “It is dead. Listen, my dear, people are poor, they can’t provide for themselves. What can they do?! It is impossible to make ends meet. Everyone is suffering.”
Customers find themselves in the same predicament. Their purchasing powers diminished overnight.
“Everything is expensive. Nothing is cheap here. Therefore, I haven’t gotten anything for my family. Being poor is tough. We haven’t been able to buy anything since the prices went up,” one woman told Meydan TV.
Another respondent said that the economy was already in dire straits before but got only worse since the government shifted to the floating manat. “It was always difficult to get by; however, it all got much worse when dollar rose in value,” he said.