Nagui al-Ashqar, head of the Finance Ministry’s technical office, said that a smart card system for subsidizing petroleum substances would save around LE36 billion annually.
In a press conference, Ashqar said that the subsidy takes about 20-22 percent of the budget, while petroleum substances take around 62 percent of the subsidy. LE120 billion was allocated in 2012-2013 period as a subsidy of the petroleum substances. However, a shortage of fuel at gasoline stations has continued due to ongoing smuggling.
The petroleum substances subsidy during the current fiscal year of 2013-2014 was reduced to LE99.6 billion through regular work using the smart card system, which saves LE20 billion, Ashqar said, adding that no shortages are taking place in the meantime.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm