The latest clash on the Tajik-Kyrgyz border has impact on daily life of the citizens of both countries

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C CABAR.asia says that according to unofficial data, over a thousand of Tajikistanis had arrived in Kyrgyzstan via Batken region before the pandemic every day both via the checkpoint and via uncontrolled locations in villages. They came to earn money, for treatment and recreation. However, bilateral relations stopped after the latest armed conflict that took place on the Tajik-Kyrgyz border reportedly had its impact on the daily life of the citizens of both states. First, it affected those who crossed the border for work, study, as well as business owners who had business and logistic relations with the neighboring country.

Thus, taxi drivers used to drive passengers from the city of Osh to the border of Tajikistan from autumn till summer.

But since April, after the borders were closed, their work stopped. Now all border villages of Kyrgyzstan have vigilante groups that do not let people and vehicles to cross the border. Therefore, there are no clients.

People running small stores in the border villages in Batken region used to buy products from Tajikistan – fruits, vegetables, sour cream, kefir, sausage goods and pastry items. A large fair with participation of merchants from the neighboring country was held once a week. But now the border is closed and all supplies stopped.

“The goods from Tajikistan were much cheaper than ours. Now we sell only domestic products. Unfortunately, prices are high and buyers are outraged. But we can do nothing about it because we buy goods at high prices,” Kyrgyz merchants say.

Trade relations between Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan were not only in the border areas, but in large cities.

Damira Artykova opened a small sewing room in Bishkek in 2017. She has 20 employees and about 10 seamstresses at home. She sews women’s T-shirts, dresses and blouses and produces nearly 400 items of each kind of apparel every month.

According to her, for years of work she earned regular customers who make regular orders. Among them are buyers from Russia and Tajikistan. The latter buy products for resale in Russia. Although, there have not been many Tajikistan-based wholesalers lately, the woman valued her clients and tried to keep to schedule.

According to her, they sent the last batch of dresses to Tajikistan, Khujand, by car in early April. Since then, they do not have new orders from the Tajik party.

Source: Asia-Plus