Hike in Gasoline Prices Affects Egyptian Transportation Sector

Hike in Gasoline Prices Affects Egyptian Transportation Sector

Tuesday, 19 June, 2018 - 06:00
An Egyptian taxi driver queues up to have his tank filled at a petrol station in Cairo. (AFP)
Cairo – Abdul Fattah Faraj
Egyptian residents complained on Monday over an increase in taxi fares despite government warnings that penalties would be imposed on drivers who do not abide by new prices issued by the Petroleum Ministry.

Asharq Al-Awsat documented those complaints, particularly in Giza and Cairo where taxi drivers insisted on increasing their fares despite passenger objections.

The Petroleum Ministry had hiked the price of gasoline by 60 percent on Saturday, which marked the second day of the Fitr holiday.

In most Egyptian provinces, congestion was reported in taxi parking lots, particularly with the increase in the number of passengers as many residents returned from their villages to Cairo following the Fitr vacation.

Several arguments were broke out between taxi drivers and their clients over fares.

Imad Abdul Fattah, 24, a resident who lives in the Boulaq Al-Dakrour neighborhood, told Asharq Al-Awsat: “Police officers are not always present in our area, allowing unqualified or dangerous drivers to drive unlicensed vehicles. With every gasoline hike, those drivers raise fares on their own.”

According to last week’s ministry decision, the price for 95 octane gasoline was increased by 17.4 percent to 7.75 Egyptian pounds a liter from 6.60 pounds; 92 octane was raised by 35 percent to 6.75 pounds a liter from 5 pounds and 80 octane went up to 5.50 pounds a liter from 3.65 pounds.

Abdul Fattah revealed the fare of a taxi drive from the district of Ashreen to Dokki or Mohandiseen was 2 Egyptian pounds.

“It is now 2.5 pounds,” he said, adding that the fare of a tuk-tuk rose by 50 percent.

The government said it introduced a hotline for complaints against anyone who violates the newly introduced decisions.

Ahmad Fathi, a resident form the province of Ghabriya, told Asharq Al-Awsat that taxi drivers on the Tanta-Cairo line want to increase their fares from 16 to 24 pounds.

According to official statistics, there are 3 million unlicensed vehicles operating in Egypt.

Arafah Saeed, who works in the public sector, said he fears that the increase in gasoline price would affect several food and consumer goods.

“The ticket of a minibus in Cairo increased from 1 to 3 pounds,” he added.

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