Prices for basic goods are creeping up in Tajikistan, and Russia’s economic woes are forcing Tajik labor migrants to return home. That spells trouble for hundreds of thousands of Tajiks who are struggling to stay above the poverty line.
Official figures show that the average monthly salary is currently hovering around 920 somoni, which is the equivalent of around $100 at the current black-market exchange rate.
Markets in the capital, Dushanbe, are visibly less crowded these days. Everybody grumbles at how much, and how fast, things are becoming more expensive. If a month ago, a liter of sunflower oil cost 10 somoni, the same now costs 15 somoni. A kilo of sugar was five somoni, now it is eight somoni. Chocolate sweets used to cost 50 somoni per kilogram — but the price is now 65 somoni. The trend is the same for other common staples, such as potatoes and onions.
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