Egypt’s sugar production reaches 2.2 mln tonnes in 2016, attracts investments

Ahram Online , Thursday 23 Jun 2016

Harvesting sugarcane in Upper Egypt
Harvesting sugarcane in Upper Egypt's Qena, 2014 (Photo: Bassem Abo Alabass)

Egypt’s sugar production reached 2.2 million tonnes in 2016, 900 000 tonnes less than consumed domestically, said the Ministry of Agriculture in a press release on Thursday.

The government seeks to raise the production of sugar to meet domestic consumption by expanding sugarcane and beet farming while boosting their productivity.

Sugar is a main staple in the food subsidy system, which benefits around 69 million Egyptians.

Several sugar factories are currently under construction in Sharqiya governorate at a cost of EGP 2.5 billion and are planned to start production in 2018 to add 250,000 tonnes annually.

The United Arab Emirates has also invested EGP 6 billion in developing existing sugar plants, read the statement.

The government also expects to see an expansion of the area in which sugarcane and beet are grown as part of the 1.5 million-feddan reclamation project.

In December, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi inaugurated the first phase of the national project to expand the country’s farmland by reclaiming 1.5 million feddans nationwide.

In November, the cabinet approved the establishment of a company with a capital of LE 15 billion (around $2 billion) to manage the megaproject.

In efforts to meet the domestic consumption of sugar, Egypt had imposed an export tax worth EGP 900 per tonne in May.

The government cancelled in February a 20 percent temporary tariff on sugar imports imposed last year for 200 days to defend the local industry from dumping.

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