The financial crisis, which is underway in Turkmenistan, has grown into a food crisis. All across the country people stand in huge queues in an attempt to buy cigarettes, oil, chicken drums, eggs and other food products.
The Turkmen authorities are trying to combat the crisis, or its symptoms, to be more precise.
The majority of newscasts on TV channels are devoted to the broadcasts which demonstrate the abundance of cheap food products available on the counters of stores.
In some stores, judging by price tags, the food prices have indeed dropped. However, it turned out that the price indicated on the price tag is not real. For instance, when buying apples at 5 manats per kilo, at the check-out customers are requested to pay 8 manats. Shop assistants respond to outraged customers that an inspection commission is expected to visit the store and they had to put wrong price tag deliberately.
The Chronicles of Turkmenistan has previously reported that vendors at local bazaars were prevented from selling food products, in particular eggs, at prices which are higher than those established by the government. This led to the fact that eggs completely disappeared from counters as vendors are reluctant to sell merchandise at a loss.
Stores make a waiting list of customers willing to buy food in short supply a month ahead. However, when their turn comes, the customers are surprised to find out they are forced to buy expired goods as an additional load to the goods they purchase.
Radio Azatlyk reports that under a threat of dismissals public sector employees are not allowed to queue in stores.
Source: Chronicles of Turkmenistan