Soaring tobacco prices to ease soon, says CEO of Egypt’s largest producer

Ahram Online , Wednesday 15 Nov 2023

Soaring prices of tobacco products in Egypt are expected to ease soon following the latest measures taken by the country to control the local market, the chairman of Egypt's largest tobacco producer Eastern Company, Hany Aman said on Wednesday.

Cigarettes. Ahram Gate.
Cigarettes. Ahram Gate.


The Egyptian cigarette market has been grappling with a severe crisis characterized by supply shortages and a substantial price surge, resulting in the emergence of a parallel market.

In a phone-in with ONTV channel on Tuesday, Aman blamed the recent market turmoil on “the greed of certain merchants who deliberately limited supply” in anticipation of an increase in prices or the imposition of new taxes.

In October, Egypt’s parliament introduced an additional EGP 0.50 VAT tax on tobacco products to help tobacco companies put the right price for their products, achieve profits, and stabilize the cigarette market.

Aman expected a period of stability and consistent supply as tobacco producers that halted production to adjust the prices per the new tax amendments have resumed production.

“All companies are operating at full capacity,” he assured.

As for the Eastern Company, Aman emphasized that it is fully equipped to meet the market's demands at this time of the year.

The company has experienced only minor temporary pauses during the tax adjustment process, said Aman, adding that since Thursday, the company's production has exceeded last year's rate by an additional 15 percent.

The Eastern Company CEO also appealed to consumers to maintain their natural consumption patterns and avoid panic buying or hoarding.

Major tobacco companies, including Philip Morris Misr and state-owned Eastern Company, increased the prices of their tobacco products by 15-20.5 percent and 12.5-20 percent, respectively.

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