Girls walk amidst stalls in a commercial area in the Jordanian town of Ramtha near the border with Syria on June 29, 2018.AFP / Khalil MAZRAAWI
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At the market in the Jordanian town of Ramtha hope is rising that the Syrian regime's territorial gains just across the border might help bring business back to life. Since the war broke out in Syria more than seven years ago, the steady flow of goods coming across the frontier has dried up – coming to a complete halt when it was closed in 2015 .Now an offensive by Syrian regime forces is seeing President Bashar Assad claw back territory in the southern frontier province of Deraa.Overland trade between the two countries was worth more than $615 million in 2010 but started falling after the conflict broke out and ground to a halt when the border was shut.Jordan's economy grew by less than two percent in 2017, compared with more than six percent annually in the five years before the war.Jordan has refused to let the tens of thousands of displaced camped along its border into the country, arguing it cannot cope with any more arrivals.
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