Egypt's supply ministry reinstates 1.8 mln citizens on ration card system

MENA , Ahram Online , Tuesday 1 Oct 2019

The step comes after President El-Sisi tweeted on Sunday that he understands the of low-income citizens who have been negatively affected by recent reforms to the ration card system

Egypt's supply minister Ali Moselhi (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Egypt's supply ministry said on Tuesday that 1.8 million citizens have been reinstated on the ration card system during the period between February and September, after having been excluded. 

In a statement, the ministry said that its offices will continue to receive appeals from citizens who have been excluded from the system, adding that anyone who is proven to be eligible for the subsidies will be re-added to the system, according to President Abdel-Fattah El Sisi's directives. 

El-Sisi stressed in a tweet on Sunday that the government is committed to guaranteeing the rights of the low-income people. 

He wrote that he understands the stance of low-income citizens who have been negatively affected by recent procedures regarding ration cards, after some of them were excluded.

The president stressed that he is following up on the related procedures.

Those who have been excluded from the system will still be able to get access to subsidized bread, the supply ministry said in a statement on Tuesday, as the exclusion is limited to other subsidized commodities.

Supply Minister Ali Moselhi directed the ministry's offices to facilitate all appeals and implement an exceptional ministerial decision to issue new ration cards for the most needy citizens. 

In 2017, the  Egyptian government began to update the country’s ration-card system, in order to improve targeting of the most needy.

The revision removed the names of dead people and those who had moved abroad, and it eliminated repeated names. It has thus far revised the data of some 20 million cards serving around 70 million people.

Food subsidies are a major component of Egypt’s social safety net.

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