I have noticed in my travels during the last 36 hours or so after returning to
To make my point, a minibus ride costs 100 dram, which was previously equivalent to around 23 cents. Now it costs just about $0.26. This holds true for almost everything. A kilo of lavash bread selling for 400 dram cost about a buck, give or take a few cents. Now it fetches at least $1.05, although the price is technically the same.
Okay, a few cents here and a nickel there does not seem to be much. But when you are dependent on $100 a month in remittances, the pennies add up very quickly. You now have 38,000 dram to live on rather than 42,000 a couple of months ago. When prices effectively stay the same for essentials like foodstuffs, you are hit pretty hard.
The boys running the Central Bank of
When the money dries up for buying real estate when all the new apartments are sold or potential customers lose interest in investing, and spending begins to slow down considerably, what will the government and the people do then? It’s difficult to fathom. We can only hope that along with the continued appreciation—there doesn’t seem to be a cessation in sight—pensions will increase considerably to meet the demands of inflation. But given the way things are progressing, with the government’s lackadaisical stance regarding the plight of the poor and underprivileged in this country, we shouldn’t expect much. And until the public starts demanding better representation and policy making, change won’t come anytime soon. Let’s hope a new administration will make a difference, assuming the people will be able to fairly elect the presidential candidate they prefer.