On Tuesday, Turkish electricity company AK Energy announced that electricity prices have increased by more than 30% in the city of Afrin.
The company raised the price of one domestic kilowatt to 2.45 Turkish Liras (TL) from 1.85 TL, and the price of one commercial kilowatt to 3.20 TL from 3 TL.
The decision to increase prices has angered the local community. The price increase comes amidst difficult economic circumstances for the region’s people, which the price increase has not taken into account – particularly because the value of the Turkish lira has depreciated against the U.S. dollar.
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The electricity company claimed that it had increased prices to reflect higher costs at the electricity source in Turkey. That spike has occurred due to high global energy prices and the high cost of electricity production, all while global and regional indicators continue to increase. Residents, however, say that at present household bills in Turkey are not even half of the bills payable in the northern areas of rural Aleppo. The residents accused the electricity company of exploiting their communities in the absence of proper regulation by local councils, as well as the complicity of electricity company officials.
Residents of northern Syria face very difficult living conditions, in a region considered to be [amongst] the poorest in the world. High prices exist for all essential products and 90% of the population relies on UN assistance to survive. These electricity operators treat this area differently from countries such as Turkey, where the minimum wage exceeds $300 per month, while the minimum wage in rural Aleppo is 900 TL, or about $60.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.