With the government restricting most of the imports in Nepal, traders inform the market is gloomy ahead of Tihar. Industry experts say that with Tihar just a week away but the government’s constrictive trade policy has dampened the market mood.

China’s frequent lockdowns under its zero-Covid policy have also taken a toll on the Nepali market as the import of festival lights has plunged by 50% this year. Traders are caught in the middle as their profit margins are squeezed due to difficulties importing products from the northern border.

According to the Federation of Electrical Entrepreneurs of Nepal, last year, festival lights worth Rs.400 million arrived for the Tihar festival. Meanwhile, the price of festival lights are predicted to rise by 20% this year.

Whilst the prices of the festival lights increase, traders are certain the cost of marigold flowers will remain the same as last year with enough domestic production.

They have predicted a total of 2 million marigold garlands to be in demand this festive season. According to the Floriculture Association Nepal, of the total requirement of 2 million garlands, 1.7 million garlands will be fulfilled through domestic production and the rest will be imported from India.