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Egypt rules out plans to raise industry energy prices this year

Egypt's industry minister Mahmoud Eisa has ruled out plans to raise industrial natural gas and electricity prices again this year after cutting subsidies for heavy industry in early 2012, Reuters has reported. "There is a decision that we shouldn't approach any other industries this year with further cuts in subsidies, as the January cuts are sufficient to get the subsidy bill down," the minister said. The higher rates for steel, cement, glass and ceramics industries since the beginning of the year are meant to bring the government subsidy bill down from EGP95bn to around EGP70bn, Eisa said.