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Health Ministry refuses to refer EGP 1.6bn of cigarettes tax to GAHI - Daily News Egypt

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Health Ministry refuses to refer EGP 1.6bn of cigarettes tax to GAHI

The authority will not obtain EGP 5bn before the first half of 2016/2017, say sources

Sources in the parliament’s Health Committee revealed that the Ministry of Finance has referred a total amount of EGP 1.6bn of taxes on cigarettes and tobacco in 2015 to the Ministry of Health. However, the latter has been stalling the process of referring the amount to the General Authority for Health Insurance (GAHI).

The sources, which preferred to remain anonymous, added that both ministries had reached an agreement about the amount in July. The money was referred to the Health Ministry, which refuses to refer it to GAHI.

According to Law No. 12 of 2015, about 50 piasters of the price of cigarettes and tobacco packages are allocated for the benefit of health insurance, in order to meet the needs of patients unable to pay for their treatment.

Sources said that the allocations of health insurance in 2016 reached EGP 9bn of the total allocations of the health sector.

Total allocations of the health sector in fiscal year 2016-2017 reached EGP 74bn after the annexation of the allocations of military hospitals to the ministries of defence and interior, in addition to university hospitals.

Daily News Egypt disclosed that the government has pledged to provide additional finances to GAHI worth EGP 5bn.

Sources said that the additional funds depend on the development and modernisation plans that will be implemented by the Ministry of Health.

This has not happened yet, although the end of the first quarter of the current fiscal year is almost over.

GAHI explained that the faster the authority obtains these additional amounts of money, the better for the development of the Egyptians’ treatment system—which is not expected to happen in the first half of the current fiscal year.

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