Government Bans Importation of Luxury Goods, Prioritizes Industry, Agriculture

New law to forbid the importation of Maggi and Indomie foods, as well as fruit dates, as government labels items 'luxury' products

Prime Minister Imad Khamis announced a restriction on importing luxury goods into Syria, explaining that only those items which achieved economic growth in various industrial and agricultural areas necessary for the country's resilience would be permitted.

Khamis, together with a committee formed to implement the plan, agreed to issue approvals for importing a small number of goods, such as fire extinguishers, potato starch, paint colors and raw leather for industrial use. Other items will include fishing nets and gas lighters, as well as food for police dogs used by military and security guards confronting armed terrorist gangs.

The committee rejected the importation of Maggi cubes, which account for 6 million euros per year, as well as Indomie noodles and fruit dates, which also account for 6 million euros. Long-life milk, tamarind, coconut, frozen meat, sports balls, plastic cages for chickens, laundry machines and washers, screens, children’s toys and others did not receive approval for importation, while other items, such as industrial vacuums and necessities for agricultural production, were put under study for the possibility of importation.

The question arises: Does preventing the import of these goods open the door for smugglers to profit, and are there effective mechanisms in place to prevent them from being smuggled and sold outside the markets?

This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.


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