Eid al-Adha shadowed by soaring livestock prices and economic hardship in Afghanistan

As Eid al-Adha approaches, the people of Afghanistan are facing a double whammy of poverty and soaring livestock prices, leaving many with little to celebrate the holiday.

Livestock markets have been set up in many parts of the country for people to buy an animal for Eid al-Adha, but sellers are reporting fewer buyers this year due to the rising cost of living.

“The supply of sacrificial animals is good compared to previous years,” a livestock seller in Takhar province said. “But people are unable to buy” he added.

For many sellers, there will be no market for them if the situation doesn’t improve.

Esmatullah, a livestock seller from Badakhshan province, said he has brought 35 goats and lambs to the market, but only sold 11 over the last few days. “I don’t think I could sell all them. There are not enough people who can afford.” He said.

Nazeer Ahmad, a resident in Takhar, said the that economy has collapsed and prices have skyrocketed since the Taliban takeover in August 2021 and prices have soared. “I bought a lamb for 12,000 Afghani ($140) last year. This year a lamb costs 15,000 Afghani ($175),” he lamented.

Livestock sellers in Takhar also blame the provincial governor for pushing the prices up through different forms of taxes.