Why a market in Jeddah called the “Souq of the Dead”?

There are a great emerging and notable market observed in the coastal city of Saudi Arabia which is getting famous day by day. This famous market is known as “Souq of the Dead”. This market targets stuff which includes trading clothes of the deceased people, as a dead person’s belongings are left with their relatives such as clothes and other things.   The actual reason as to why this market is called “Souq of the Dead” and the story behind such a unique name is the fact that the market deals in clothes of deceased people. The perception of the name is that a good proportion of the clothes displayed in the market are donated by the relatives of those who recently died.

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The merchants in the “Souq of the Dead” market sell this donated stuff at low prices which range from five to 20 Saudi Riyals per item. This market extends and connects with Al-Sawarikh market which is in the western region of Jeddah. The Al-Sawarikh Market is also called as paradise market and a shopping hub for those who are fond of bargaining. The Al-Sawarikh Market is growing more and more rapidly which attracts every year new customers, shoppers, consumers, visitors, and guests. This way “Souq of the dead” market becomes prominent and famous to be called the biggest and most popular market in its niche in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as well as the Middle East.

Mohamed Ali Saleem, who is an economics researcher, shared his research experience by stating that the shoppers who are visiting the market frequently are usually African or Asian immigrants. They visit this market because they usually have limited income scale rate in Saudi Arabia. Besides this, many Saudis have also shown interest in visiting “Souq of the Dead” market and save money by purchasing stuff which may be new or slightly used at low prices.

Economics researcher, Mohamed Ali Saleem, highlighted the main cause that why the market is popular. He said it is because it has certain basic facts such as the market is known for selling goods which are almost 90 percent cheaper than shopping malls offering multiple arrays of stock. Some goods on sale are from international brands which are much expensive to buy from malls or branded stores. Some goods are available in many cheap prices and are durable.

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Even some of the retailers in the market belong from other places and deal with second-hand clothing. The surface area of Al-Sawarikh market is more than one million square meters along with the ratio of stalls which is around 15,000. Approximately 1,000 stores in the market sell junk stuff which is also one of the main facts that the market is considered as one of the landmarks in Jeddah which have been in existence for more than three decades.  

Source: Al Arabiya

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