Novruz symbolic sign in Baku. Photo by Aziz Karimov for the Caucasian Knot

20 March 2021, 19:11

Novruz celebrations begin in Azerbaijan amid coronavirus restrictions

On the eve of Novruz, Azerbaijani authorities extended the coronavirus restrictions until June 1, and banned public transport during the holiday. This led to a decrease in the number of buyers and provoked a jump in food prices, said Eiyub Guseinov, Chairman of the Union of Free Consumers.

Since March 20, Azerbaijan has five days-off in honour of the Novruz celebrations, which will last until March 24 inclusive. On March 19, the authorities decided to extend the coronavirus restrictions until June 1. According to the decree, restrictions on the operation of public transport on weekends remain in force. At the same time, public transport will not work during the Novruz holiday, the "Report.az" informed on March 19.

The Azerbaijani authorities' ban on public transport during Novruz has lead to a significant increase of prices at marketplaces. Over the past few weeks, the foodstuff prices have gone up by an average of 6-8%, Mr Guseinov asserts. "On weekends, public transport is idling; while fairs only work at weekends; therefore, there are few buyers at fairs, which in turn leads to higher prices," the "Sputnik Azerbaijan" quotes Eiyub Guseinov as saying on March 18.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on March 20, 2021 at 10:56 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

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