Some sellers and other people who work on the roadsides in Kabul city said on Monday they are concerned about the spread of the COVID-19 in Afghanistan because of its effect on their livelihood.
They said that if they delay their business for one day, they will not be able to buy bread for their families.
Abdul Qadir, a 45-year-old seller, said that he is concerned about his income rather than the coronavirus.
“If I delay my business for one day, I will not be able to earn what I spent. I have to payoff my expenses daily,” said Abdul Qadir.
According to the Ministry of Economy, one person out of two in Afghanistan is below the poverty line, and those numbers will be increased with the outbreak of COVID-19.
“People can’t earn their daily food. We are pushed backwards in our trade. The sellers can’t afford to be jobless for a single day,” said Majid, a shopkeeper in Kabul city.
“If they(the government) want a lockdown, business will be stopped. Peoples’ budgets are small. If they lose their business, they will be faced with starvation,” said Abdul Hadi, a technician.
The Ministry of Economy confirmed that the Afghanistan economy will be harmed by the spread of the COVID-19.
“Our economy will be harmed more than other countries in the region or in the world. For this reason, the government has taken measures to control the economy--and prices--and to fight the coronavirus,” said Mohammad Younus Salak, spokesman for the Ministry of Economy.
Based on figures from the Ministry of Economy, 24% people are jobless in Afghanistan, and 30 percent of the jobless are youths.
According to people the jobless numbers will be increased as hundreds of thousands of Afghans returning to Afghanistan from Iran.