President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi met Prime Minister Sherif Ismail, ministers of defence, interior, justice, and finance, and heads of the Egyptian General Intelligence and Administrative Control Authority (ACA) on Saturday to discuss security conditions and the prices of medications, according to a statement issued from the presidency.
The meeting discussed the security conditions all over Egypt and especially in Sinai, which is currently witnessing ongoing military operations conducted by the armed and police forces against militants who have been engaged in recent attacks targeting police checkpoints, the statement noted.
“President Al-Sisi stressed the necessity of continuing the coordination between all state apparatuses to impose a strict blockade on terrorists and arresting them,” the statement added.
Moreover, the meeting touched on the mechanisms of action of the newly established and presidentially approved National Authority for Food Safety. The authority is responsible for strictly monitoring the safety of food in all its manufacturing stages.
During the meeting, officials also discussed the recent measures carried out by the government to increase the price of some types of medicines in Egypt. Al-Sisi asserted the necessity of tightening grip on the market to ensure moderate pricing of medications.
“Al-Sisi referred to the state’s refusal of suggestions to increase the prices of all medicines without exceptions. The state had only agreed to increase 20% of all medicines’ prices and to the diversification in price hikes in a convenient manner,” the statement read.
In the same context, Al-Sisi asserted the necessity of exerting efforts to mitigate burdens imposed on Egyptians, whose endurance of the current economic conditions he praised.
Presidency spokesperson Alaa Youssef added in the statement that Al-Sisi called for intensifying current efforts to achieve tangible progress in the economic development levels through benefiting from the devaluation of the Egyptian pound to increase Egyptian exports and attract more foreign investments.
Al-Sisi further called on the government to continue efforts exerted to mitigate burdens on low-income classes and those most in need through intensive monitoring of markets, adjusting prices, and assuring the availability of main commodities at appropriate prices.
Following the devaluation of the Egyptian pound and the collapse of the Egyptian currency in against the US dollar, medicine manufacturers are facing problems in affording imported raw materials for the industry. Consequently, the government agreed last week to increase the prices of medicines. The health minister said in a press statement that the approved increase will not exceed 15% of local medicines and 20% of imported medicines, and that the increase is divided into three segments.
Following the government’s declaration, Al-Sisi called on the government to provide imported medicines that do not have local alternatives, stressing the need to enhance the supply of medicines in the market, and to ensure providing various types of medicines at affordable prices, as well as the necessary funds to do so.