Four common markets between the border areas of Afghanistan and Tajikistan were reopened after four years of being closed.
According to local officials of Badakhshan, these common markets, which were closed four years ago due to the spread of COVID-19, have started to operate again with the understanding between the two countries.
“With the discussion of the Ministry of Finance and the General Directorate of Customs, they were able to solve the problems this week and open the markets,” said Shafaqtullah Muhaqiq, head of the customs department in Badakhshan.
“After four years, this border was opened due to the efforts of the authorities on both sides of the border. It is only open on Saturdays,” said Hayatullah Hameedi, governor of the Eshkashim district of Badakhshan.
A number of Badakhshan residents consider the reopening and trade in these joint markets important for the economic growth of the families of both countries.
“Ethnic and social relations can be repaired, and people's trade will become good. The goods they need are exported from here, and the goods we need are imported from there,” said Mer Sayed Sayed, a local resident.
Shopkeepers welcomed the joint markets.
Fortunately, we spent a day in the market today. On other days, we would not sell items worth 10-20,000. Today, we calculated that we sold approximately 55,000 Afs-worth,” said Merzakhan, a seller.
“Our demand from the government is to open all borders for trade and commerce so that business can flourish in the country,” said Zalmai, a shopkeeper.
Badakhshan province has a common market with Tajikistan in some districts of Badakhshan and these markets were closed four years ago due to the spread of the coronavirus.