A governmental official stated to Egypt Oil&Gas that the Egyptian government led by Prime Minister, Sherif Ismail, decided to delay increasing fuel prices to May 2017. This came in hopes to linking the price hikes to the generalization of the third phase of fuel smart cards across the country.

Moreover, the source added that the Egyptian Cabinet approved the Ministry of Petroleum’s plan to restructure and develop refineries across Egypt starting 2017 until 2019 with total cost $8b. This plan aims to save not less than $2b a year from the country’s importation bill for petroleum derivatives and other fuels. Additionally, the source informed that the government is ongoing in its program to lift fuel subsidies gradually within three years, while ensuring subsidies will be afforded to low income citizens after applying the fuel smart cards.

In related news, the number of Egyptian citizens who had applied for fuel smart cards had reached 5m out of the 6.5m subsidy-beneficiaries estimated by the Egyptian Traffic Authority. This came in a statement by Smart Cards Manager at E-Finance, Khaled Abdel Ghany, to Egypt Oil&Gas.