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Livestock Sales Soar In The UAE Despite ‎High Prices

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DUBAI, January 9, 2006 (Khaleej Times Online) — Animal markets in Dubai have raised the prices of sacrificial animals by 20 to 30 per cent as Eid Al Adha approaches. Despite the hike, the sales have shot up considerably.

Owners of shops interviewed by Khaleej Times attributed the hikes to the rental increase, the rise in shipping costs as well as limited number of livestock imported from certain countries due to ban imposed by the UAE authorities following the outbreak of animal diseases.

Mohammed Ali from Almouz Livestock said that most of the animal prices had been increased. The cheapest sacrificial animal was from Somalia , being sold at Dh180-200 while the price stood at Dh120 per head only a few days ago.

“Livestock from Australia is sold at Dh360-400 per head while earlier it did not exceed Dh300. Iranian livestock which is more expensive is between Dh550-600. He said that the majority of people are trying to purchase cheaper animals because the budget of most families is affected by the general hike in prices of different commodities in the UAE.

Gulam Bashir from Hussein Folad Livestock felt that most of the traders are increasing their prices during Eid Al Adha because it is a season where they can gain more profits, rather than because there is any real justification for it. “I have been selling livestock for a long time, and especially during the days close to Eid, the price of a sheep or a goat imported from Iran and Australia increased from Dh300 to Dh600, while the Indian livestock weighing 20kg rose from Dh300 to around Dh550."

He said that Arabs, UAE nationals and Africans are preferring Sudanese and Syrian livestock which are the most expensive. The most expensive of them is Sudanese sheep whose prices range between Dh700 and Dh800.

He said the prices of the Somali and Ethiopian sheep are also increasing due to the ban on import of livestock from the two countries following the outbreak of rift valley fever.

Shah Hassan from Al Badar Livestock in Dubai said that he imports from India , Iran and Pakistan because their prices are affordable and the majority of people prefer them.

Salem Ali, trader from Khaleej trading, said most of the expatriates have limited income and they prefer Asian and Somali sheep whose prices range between Dh180 and Dh350, while the UAE nationals prefer the Jazeri whose price stands at Dh550. Besides, prices of Sudanese and Syrian livestock could reach Dh800 during Eid Al Adha. They also buy small calf whose price can reach Dh1,700 and the big calf costs Dh5,000.

He said most of the families prefer to sacrifice animals in front of their houses, especially in remote areas, which are out of the reach of municipality inspectors, while those who have villas opt to slaughter the animals in their yards.

Most of the people expressed their reservations with regard to slaughtering in abattoirs. They said it causes a lot of delay because of the crowding on the first day of Eid, adding that they prefer to make their sacrifice on the second day.

They suggested that the civic bodies should increase the number of slaughter houses.

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