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Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Price controls on private healthcare and Emaar’s possible investment

Price controls on private healthcare and Emaar’s possible investment in the new capital were among the highlights of interesting night on the airwaves.

The Health Ministry is still set on imposing price controls on private sector healthcarethrough a bill we first heard about last month. That was the message senior ministry official Ali Mahrous relayed to Hona Al Asema’s Lamees Al Hadidi, who praised the move. Mahrous said the bill would impose caps that would be based on a ministry-imposed “tiering” of healthcare facilities. The proposal would divide hospitals into five brackets based on quality of the service provided. Mahrous fell just short of calling the current pricing schemes of private hospitals and clinics “fraudulent” to justify the move.

Was the private sector consulted on any of this? Of course not. But Mahrous appeared to suggest that the Health Ministry wants to launch a (you guessed it) “national dialogue,” with the assumption being that it has now started with this show (watch, runtime 5:02).

Emaar Chairman Mohamed Alabbar’s renewed interest in Egypt (more on that in the Speed Round) was the highlight of Kol Youm’s Amr Adib’s interview with Investment Minister Sahar Nasr. She tells the host that Alabbar’s appetite would not have been whet without legislative reforms such as the Investment Act. Nasr added that the Investment Act executive regulations could receive the final nod from the cabinet’s economic group as early as next Wednesday (watch, runtime 5:03).

From that high, Adib sunk back to his usual low of discussing Qatar, delving into theemergency air corridor provided for Qatar with Civil Aviation Minister Sherif Fathy. Fathy stressed that Qatari planes are still barred from landing at any of the Arab quartet’s airports (watch, runtime 6:19). Fathy also discussed Hajj ticket prices, saying that expensive tickets are likely part of high-end packages (watch, runtime 5:03).

EgyptAir CEO and Chairman Sherif Ezzat was also busy defending the airline’s pricing, telling Sada El Balad’s Ahmed Moussa that the ticket prices were set months ago through a specialized committee. According to Ezzat, the steep increase is a result of the EGP float (watch, runtime 22:01).

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