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Sunday, 4 February 2018

Poultry prices and presidential elections

It was a two-pronged evening on the airwaves last night, with the debate being largely dominated by the sharp drop in poultry prices at government outlets and (naturally enough) continued discussion of the presidential election campaign.

Masaa DMC’s Eman El Hosary sat down with presidential candidate Moussa Mostafa Moussa, who said Al Ghad Party — which he heads — saw a “major opportunity” to win the elections after candidates dropped out of the race (watch, runtime 4:25). He also told El Hossary that his goal is to win (watch, runtime 4:24).

Over on Al Hayah Al Youm, Al Tagamoa and Al Wafd party representatives each threw their weight behind President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, slamming opposition calls for a boycott of the presidential poll. They told host Tamer Amin that El Sisi’s re-election is a necessity to keep the Ikhwan at bay (watch, runtime 4:05).

Al Wafd Party’s deputy head Hossam El Kholy said that he hoped to see more competition in the elections, but urged citizens to head to the polls regardless of their choice (watch, runtime 4:33).

Over on Hona Al Asema, Lamees Al Hadidi discussed the election in her 4+1 segment (watch, runtime 2:40) and talked about President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s visit to Oman with Ittihadiya spokesman Bassam Rady, who said the president’s itinerary centers around economic relations and regional issues, including Syria and Yemen (watch, runtime 3:27).

Lamees also spoke to Supply Ministry spokesman Mamdouh Ramadan about the sudden drop in poultry prices. He said the government moved to plug the gap in the poultry market through new imports, preferring that to being “at the mercy” of certain local producers that failed to meet the country’s production needs (watch, runtime 1:55). Ramadan also reassured citizens that the poultry is safe for consumption, (watch, runtime 3:35) in answer to claims suggesting that the low price tag is the result of a close expiry date.

Lamees also spoke to the head of the Cairo Chamber of Commerce’s poultry division, Abdel Aziz El Sayed, who pointed out that the low poultry prices at government outlets will harm private-sector suppliers and retailers, who will not be able to compete (watch, runtime 4:11). El Sayed also said that he sees prices rebounding to a normal range of EGP 26-27, claiming the state is pushing a subsidy of EGP 9 per kg of chicken, which has warped the prices. (watch, runtime 16:43).

With the notion of supply and demand seemingly lost on him (and the notion of asking his wife anathema), Kol Youm’s Amr Adib clucked around like a headless chicken looking for answers to why and how poultry prices dropped to lows of EGP 15 per kg from a previous EGP 29. He spoke to Consumer Protection Agency head Atef Yacoub (watch, runtime 5:57) and Food Industries Holding Company Chairman Alaa El Din Fahmy (watch, runtime 4:22).

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