As winter approaches, Afghans struggle to cope amid price hiketext_fields
Kabul: With the onset of winter in the horizon, cash-strapped Afghans in the war-ravaged country are finding themselves in unenviable situation, and preparing to cope with the advwrsity.
The majority of the population live under the poverty line and can hardly afford basic daily needs, a problem compounded by rising prices of commodities.
"The purchase of power is slimming day by day and people can't afford to buy wood or other necessities to cope with the winter and keep their homes warm in the chilly season," a wood buyer Yar Mohammad told Xinhua news agency.
Mohammad said that the skyrocketing prices of daily needs have sandwiched the ordinary people, adding that the closure of borders and freezing Afghan assets abroad have caused economic woes for Afghans.
"Borders are closed, banks don't have normal activities and Afghanistan assets abroad have been frozen," Mohammad said angrily.
Adding to the suffering is the fact that $10 billion of Afghan's assets lie reportedly frozen by the US since the Taliban took over Afghanistan in mid-August,. This has led to an uncertain situation where bank account owners have begun withdrawing their capital and local banks can not give more than $200 each week.
The country's economic situation worsens with a high inflation rate, increasing unemployment and growing poverty.
Afghan homes are bereft of central heating system that could give relief from winter in the mountainous country, when most people rely on old-fashioned heating system with wood stove to keep their homes warm.
"The business has flopped, the number of jobless people is on the rise and the economic situation is extremely unstable while the prices of fuel including petrol and diesel are going up day by day," a coal seller Mohammad Sabir whispered.
Last year at this time, according to Sabir, his shop was full of coal buyers. But nowadays, rarely do locals ask for coal, although the price is not too high.
"The price of one-ton coal was 10,000 Afghanis last year but this year it costs 11,000 Afghanis," Sabir said, adding the purchase of power of the people has been shrunk this year in comparison with last year.