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Egypt Investigates Alleged Corruption in Ministry of Supply: Unraveling the Sugar Crisis

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Hadeel Hashem
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Egypt Investigates Alleged Corruption in Ministry of Supply: Unraveling the Sugar Crisis

In an ongoing probe into corruption allegations, the Egyptian judicial authorities are investigating several government officials from the Ministry of Supply. They are accused by the Public Prosecution of committing corruption crimes with the intent to manipulate the strategic commodities market, predominantly rice and sugar.

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Unraveling the Corruption Web

As per the Public Prosecution's investigations, there are nine defendants, including officials from the Ministry of Supply, connected to the case. Security sources reported that these individuals have been detained for 15 days pending further investigations. A source from the Administrative Control Authority indicated to the Egyptian media that these defendants were the orchestrators behind the recent sugar crisis in the country.

Charges and Implications

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The defendants have been charged with corruption, bribery, abuse of power, embezzlement of public funds, withholding goods, and attempts to monopolize strategic commodities. The Ministry of Supply has yet to comment on the corruption case. However, in a recent announcement, the Egyptian Minister of Supply Ali Moselhi stated an increase in sugar supply in the markets, with the selling price set at 27 EGP per kilo.

Managing the Commodity Crisis

The Public Prosecution has also highlighted the seizure of 590 tons of sugar, along with other commodities like oil and rice, valued at 20 million EGP. These goods were stored by a trader with the intention to create an artificial shortage and then sell them in the parallel market. Hassan El-Fendi, head of the Sugar Division at the Egyptian Food Industries Chamber of Commerce, stated that Egypt's sugar production covers at least 90% of consumption, leaving no grounds for the recent crisis. Despite this, he called for stringent market supervision, especially in light of the current corruption case. The country produces approximately 2.8 million tons of sugar annually, while consumption rates hover around 3.2 million tons. This gap of 400,000 tons is covered through imports in collaboration with the private sector.

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