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Thursday, 6 July 2017

Cutting down on fuel and energy subsidies is just what the doctor ordered

Cutting down on fuel and energy subsidies is just what the doctor ordered for Egypt and its poorest citizens, Patrick Werr writes in his latest piece for The National. “The move to reduce energy subsidies is long overdue,” Werr says, arguing that it’s the wealthy rather than the poor who were the main beneficiaries of the subsidies and “the main victims of these price increases,” since they consume the bulk of Egypt’s energy output. The subsidy system is not only plagued by endless corruption, but the state’s monstrous subsidy bill has also been holding back growth and sucking up funds that would be far better spent on education, health and infrastructure for the poor. So fret not, Werr says, because “the economy should soar” once Egypt gets its finances in order. In the meantime though, “it’s the rich who will have to make painful lifestyle adjustments.”

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