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Power outages in Egypt raise generators’ prices 300 per cent

Egypt will not witness a "power cut crisis" similar to the one it had witnessed last summer

The price of power generators tripled in Egypt, with the government’s inability to resolve the crisis of power outages, which exceed 6 hours per day, reports London-based Alaraby.

Egypt faces chronic power shortages, which cause rolling blackouts, particularly in summer, that affect tens of millions of people.

After recording hundreds of millions of dollars in losses last summer as a result of power outages for long periods, the private sector, including investment hospitals, companies, tourist villages, private clinics, shops and advisory offices, resorted to buying generators.

The Arab world’s most populous country produces about 25,000 megawatts, while consumption in the summer exceeds 28,000 megawatts.

The deteriorating condition of the public electricity network and the government’s lack of commitment to periodic maintenance of the stations led to the loss of the huge potential of the power supply, according to specialists.

The government says it needs EGP130 billion ($17bn) to definitively resolve the electricity crisis.

It was not just the investment units that resorted to generators – many citizens bought generators as well, while some of the poorer classes in Egypt preferred to return to old lighting techniques such as gas lamps.

The price of a one-kilowatt-capacity generator, which is enough to illuminate a small house without running conditioners, reached EGP1,800 ($236), up by 300 per cent from EGP600 ($78) last year.

Egypt’s Electricity Minister, Mohamed Shaker, said earlier this month that Egypt will not witness a “power cut crisis” similar to the one it had witnessed last summer.

He said, during the launch of a power plant in Suez’s Ain Sukhna, that the state has recently established new power plants costing EGP20bn