Heratis claim gas prices double in two weeks
HERAT CITY (Pajhwok): Some residents of the western province of Herat on Monday complained about what they said a 50 percent increase in liquefied gas rate due to government’s lack of control over prices.
The residents said the price of a kilogram of the Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) hovered between 30 afghanis and 40 afghanis two weeks ago in the provincial capital, Herat City. Monday’s rate of the same quantity was 55afs and 60afs.
The residents questioned how the gas prices suddenly doubled, blaming the artificial increase on government’s negligence. “If the government has no control over prices, they will increase even more,” said Abdul Haq Muradi, who lives in Mukhabirat Road locality in Herat City.
He told Pajhwok Afghan News gas prices increased from 30afs to 60 afs, a 50 percent hike, within two weeks, but the government paid no attention.
Aziz Ahmadi, another resident in the 8th municipal district, said local officials were unaware about the hike in gas prices and no action from the government was expected until the gas prices hit the roof.
“Purchasing gas is really difficult for impoverished families, the government should look into the matter,” said Feroz Ahmadi, another resident.
However, a gas seller, Wakeel Ahmad, said they purchased gas from traders against high prices and they had no choice but to sell it that way. He said the price of a gas cylinder had also increased from earlier 350afs to 570afs.
Samim Ghwasi, a gas importer, said gas imports from Turkmenistan declined during the past one month, resulting in increased gas price.
Abdul Wakeel Alami, Herat’s petroleum and gas director, confirmed the gas price sharply increased after the number of gas tankers from Turkmenistan reduced to 20 from 100.
Gulam Jilani, the governor’s spokesman, also confirmed the hike in gas price and said a committee had been created to evaluate the issue.
“Based on complaints received, a committee comprising officials from different organizations has been tasked with controlling the gas price and preventing the increase in price.”
M. Younus Qazizada, Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries head for Herat, linked the increase in gas price to the cut in imports from Turkmenistan during the past two weeks.
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