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Monday, 1 April 2019

Supply Ministry to begin registering newborns to subsidy rolls as of June, after completing its Kramer purge

The Supply Ministry will begin registering newborns on its subsidy rolls in June, despite having yet to actually remove any Kramers from the system, Minister Ali El Moselhy said, according to the local press. Thus far, Kramers who have been mooching off the subsidy program have only been notified that their subsidy privileges will be revoked, but the ministry has yet to pull the trigger. The ministry appears to still be reviewing appeals by subsidy recipients who claim they were unfairly removed from the state’s welfare program in the second phase of the ministry’s purge, and El Moselhy did not disclose when this process should wrap up. It appears that one-time beneficiaries will only actually be pulled off the subsidy rolls once the entire process of purging subsidy rolls is complete. El Moselhy reiterated that the third and final phase of its purge this month, but has yet to announce a specific date.

Background: The first phase of the purge, which began in 2017, aimed to cut 10% of ration card holders by weeding out fraudsters, while the second phase is meant to remove 40 mn people. The ministry has not yet announced expected figures for the third phase of the cleanse. The ministry had laid out in February new criteria for individuals no longer eligible for welfare benefits, including those consuming more than 650 KW of electricity, paying phone bills in excess of EGP 800 per month, or spending more than EGP 30k on school fees. Around 2 mn newborns were last added in August and September 2018 to 1.2 mn ration cards.

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