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Wednesday, 26 August 2020

Refund of Egypt’s school bus fees + PCR testing weigh on tourism bookings?

The highlight of last night’s talk shows was Consumer Protection Authority (CPA) boss Ahmed Samir Farag breaking down the CPA’s decision to refund a portion of school bus fees in a phone-in to Ala Mas’ouleety. We have the story in this morning’s Speed Round, below.

The CPA settled on requiring schools and universities to refund 25% of bus fees from the last academic year by crunching the numbers on how much of the full year schools were actually in session before transitioning to online learning, Farag told host Ahmed Moussa. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi had first ordered schools and universities to shut down in mid-March in what was originally meant to be a two-week measure. Farag stressed to Moussa that parents must file complaints to alert the agency of any cases of non-compliance from schools on the repayment decision, which is punishable by law (watch, runtime: 7:40).

PCR test requirements weighing on tourism bookings? Some tourists have apparently been canceling their hotel reservations in Egypt’s resort towns because of the government’s (very sensible) requirements that incoming tourists provide negative PCR test results, Chamber of Tourism Establishments member Waheed Assem claimed. Assem told Moussa that, in comparison to the low cost of spending one week in Egypt (which he put at around USD 150), a PCR test is too expensive. He suggested offering subsidized tests at Egypt’s airports, or throwing caution to the wind and doing away with the testing requirement for travelers to South Sinai and the Red Sea (watch, runtime: 12:13).

Uh, let’s not do away with the PCR tests just yet, ‘k? Thanks. Love, Enterprise.

Meanwhile, Endowments Minister Mohamed Mokhtar Gomaa debriefed Moussa on preparations for the resumption of Friday prayers at “major” mosques across the country, including a shortened sermon and regular disinfection (watch, runtime: 27:10).

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