CAIRO: A total of 300,000 fuel smart cards will be disturbed at traffic departments of Cairo, Giza and Qalyubia starting from Saturday, said Khaled Abdel Ghany, head of E-Finance Company that is in charge of the fuel smart card project.
“The company has printed 5.3 million smart cards so far out of which five million have been already distrusted in different governorates while the rest will be distributed soon. The new system, which covers 3,400 oil stations nationwide, was initially implemented in 1,100 oil stations,” Abdel Ghany was quoted by Youm7 Saturday.
The new system aims to curb misuse of petroleum products and to cut state fuel subsidies accounting for 13 percent of government spending in the public budget for the 2014-15 Fiscal Year.
“The card system will be used by the registered vehicles, but Tok-Toks, motorcycles and agricultural tractors,” Abdel Ghany said.
The move comes in the light of a governmental plan to gradually lift subsides. In July 2014, Egypt lifted subsides on petroleum products used by to individuals and factories. The decision, which was issued a month after President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi was elected, has caused major price hikes which sparked the rage of many locals.
According to the ministry of finance, 20-22 percent of the state budget is directed to subsidies, of which 62 percent for petroleum products. 120 billion EGP was allocated for fuel subsidies during the fiscal year 2012-2013.
Using smart cards for distribution of subsided petroleum products will save 36 billion EGP annually as a result of blocking smuggling internally and externally by tightening electronic control on petroleum products, Director of the Minister of Finance’s technical office Nagy Ashkar told Youm7.