Egypt increases tariffs on 'luxury imports'

Ahram Online , Friday 2 Dec 2016

Egypt raises tariffs on some imports (File Photo: DP-Sokhna port)

Egypt has raised tariffs for the second time this year on some "luxury imports" including some fruits, cosmetics, stationary and electronic gadgets, with an increase between 40 and 60 percent.

A decree by President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi was published on Thursday in the official gazette that revealed the items on which the new tariffs will be applied.

The items include fruits such as avocados, pineapple, guavas, mangoes, and oranges, among others. Other foods include cocoa, biscuits and ice cream. Some hair products, deodorants and facial masks are also included, as well as pens pencils and receivers.   

Last January, the same items were subject to a 30-40 percent tariff increase.

In 2014, Egypt embarked on a plan to introduce a number of fiscal reforms, including fuel subsidy cuts that increased prices up to 78 percent, as well as imposing new taxes to ease a growing budget deficit.

Earlier this month, Egypt's central bank decided to freely float the pound and raise key interest rates as part of a set of reforms aimed at alleviating a dollar shortage and stabilising the country's flagging economy.

The Egyptian government is planning a second phase of economic reforms, Al-Ahram Arabic website reported earlier this week, which will include imposing progressive taxation and a further cut in subsides. 

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