The mass exodus from conflict-torn Syria is having a massive impact on Europe, where a large portion of the five million Syrian refugees have landed after escaping their homeland.
Apparently, the mass exodus is also having a significant impact on everyone’s favorite J.V. team. Now ruling over just six million people instead of nine million, the Islamic State’s tax base has shrunk dramatically. And, accordingly, ISIS has suffered massive losses in revenue, which has dropped about 30 percent in the past year, according to a new report just released.
Via The Guardian:
Islamic State’s revenues have dropped about 30 percent since mid-2015, forcing the group to introduce a range of new taxes, a research group has said.
“In mid-2015, the Islamic State’s overall monthly revenue was around $80m,” said Ludovico Carlino, senior analyst at IHS, which issues regular reports on Isis-controlled territory.
“As of March 2016, the Islamic State’s monthly revenue dropped to $56m,” Carlino said.
An IHS report also said oil production in areas controlled by Isis jihadists was 21,000 barrels a day, down from 33,000 barrels a day.
This was due largely to airstrikes by the US-led coalition and Russia, although IHS warned the decline was only an “interruption of production” because jihadists were able to repair infrastructure quickly.
The report said about 50 percent of Isis revenues come from taxation and confiscation of businesses and property, with 43 percent coming from oil.
The remainder is made up of drug smuggling, the sale of electricity and donations, the report said.
“The Islamic State is still a force in the region but this drop in revenue is a significant figure and will increase the challenge for the group to run its territory in the long term,” Carlino said.
IHS said Isis had lost about 22% of its territory in the past 15 months and now ruled over six million people instead of nine million. This meant its tax base had become smaller.
So what’s a barbaric, authoritarian state to do?
In response, ISIS has been getting creative, looking for new ways to extract money from the population in order to boost revenue. Among them everything from fees for installing or repairing satellite dishes, ‘exit fees’ for leaving a city — and fines for not being able to correctly answer questions on the Koran.
Sadly, only one of these sounds much different than the ways the liberal leaders of our own country extract money from the people to fund their own ideological initiatives.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]