The most famous “mate” drink in Syria was not far from the many crises that afflicted the country for years, as the substance witnessed a rise in its price and a difference in pricing from one region to another, as well as a scarcity in its availability in some markets.
Its prices in some areas have exceeded what was determined by the Ministry of Internal Trade and Consumer Protection in the government of the regime on the 23rd of last October, which is that the retail price of 250 grams of mate is 5 thousand Syrian pounds, and a capacity of 500 grams is ten thousand pounds.
Today, Saturday, December 24, the price of a 500-gram box of yerba mate in rural Damascus ranges between 25,000 and 30,000 Syrian pounds, while its price has decreased in some neighborhoods of Damascus to 10,500 Syrian pounds.
As for the prices in the city of Lattakia, they are close to the countryside of Damascus, as the price of a 250-gram box ranges between 12,000 and 15,000 Syrian pounds, despite the difficulty of its availability, and it requires a long search for it, amid news of its cessation in the markets.
In Tartous, prices decreased again, with talk of pumping into the market, to five thousand and 500 Syrian pounds for a 250-gram can, while the price of a 500-gram package reached 11 thousand, while the price of a 250-gram mate in the city of Daraa reached nine thousand Syrian pounds. .
Queues in Homs
In addition, activists and social media pages circulated pictures of dozens of people crowding, who were said to be waiting to get mate in the city of Homs.
It is noteworthy that the material of the period witnesses a discrepancy in its prices in the cities of Syria, permeated by a wave of high prices every period, with non-compliance with the prices set by the government.
On the 23rd of last October, a member of the Board of Directors of the Damascus Chamber of Commerce, Yasser Akram, linked the high cost of mate to the high costs of transportation from the main source to Syria, in addition to the high prices of gasoline and diesel fuel, which increases the cost of transporting it internally.
Karim also called for opening the door to importing materials for merchants, including yerba mate, and allowing imports from any source and any country until the price drops.
The first importer
Mate is a popular drink in Syria, along with tea and coffee.
Syria is considered one of the countries that consumes the most yerba mate, and in 2019 it was the first importer of the substance from Argentina with 34.5 thousand tons, according to the data of the “National Institute of Yerba Mate”.
Also, 33,407 tons of mate were imported, at about 36,363,977 euros, during 2018.
Mate is a type of plant that grows in northern Argentina and Paraguay, and southern Brazil, and bears the botanical name “Ilex paraguariensis”.