DOHA: Several citizens have called on the authorities to set up souq-like markets across the country to address the soaring commodity prices.
Demolition of traditional souqs has created a severe shortage of commercial space in the country, triggering a steep hike in the rentals. The high rents of shops is a major factor that has forced many traders to raise the prices of various goods and services, they point out.
Establishing glitzy malls is not a solution to the problem since they cannot provide all goods and services and many people can not afford their prices. There is a need for alternative markets catering to all segments of the population, especially the limited income people.
“I urge the authorities to establish popular markets with simple shops catering to the common people. All the advanced countries have such markets. They will be beneficial to the traders, customers as well as the importers,” Ali Al Qahtani, a national told Al Sharq.
Citing the example of the Thursday-Friday souq in Doha, Al Qahtani said more such markets had to be established in the country to meet the demands of the limited income people.
Such markets are the essential part of any city.
They will provide a venue for wholesalers to sell out their surplus stocks at reduced prices. By generating more commercial space at relatively low rents, they can effectively curb inflation, he added.
Hamad Al Hajari, owner of a shop dealing in construction material said, he was struggling to find a suitable place after his shop located in the heart of the city was demolished some time ago.
Salem Al Dosari, another citizen urged the authorities not to demolish any market before establishing alternatives. He noted that demolition of hundreds of shops in the Mushereb—Share-e-Kahrabaa area had led to sudden hike in the rentals of commercial properties in the country.
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