Informed sources expect the Industrial Development Authority (IDA) pricing committee to postpone the third-phase of energy price raises planned for this month. The IDA plans to meet at the end of January to review energy prices for factories.
The second raise was implemented six months ago.
Fearing that energy price increases might meet with corresponding increases in consumer product prices, sources said that energy prices would remain unchanged before June. The government is keen on maintaining the current rate of inflation and avoiding additional financial burdens on its citizens.
The government had raised electricity prices for low energy consumption factories from US$1.25 per million units to US$2 per million units in 2007 as part of a gradual scheme to reach US$2.65 per million units in 2011.
Gas prices were raised in 2010 from US$1.65 per million thermal units to US$2 per million thermal units.
“We will request the trade and industry minister to maintain the current prices,” said Sherif al-Gabaly, head of the Chemicals Chamber of Commerce. “Any new price increase would negatively affect our exports.”
The Trade and Industry Ministry hopes that total annual exports will reach LE200 billion by 2013.
Translated from the Arabic Edition.