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Payments Delayed After Egypt Adjusts Food Import System

Egypt recently changed its food oil import system, and according to several sources in the nation’s government and food industry, theshift is causing delays in some subsidized goods.

Specifically, Egypt shifted the responsibility for its vegetable oil imports from the state-run General Authority for Supply Commodities (GASC) to the Food Industries Holding Company (FIHC) – another government entity – reported Reuters.

Traders told Reuters that at least one shipment of vegetable oil arrived at an Egyptian port and ran into issues with its letter of credit. Originally, that shipment was agreed to by a Meditrade tender, but upon arrival, was informed its letter of credit would not be issued by GASC but by FIHC.

The ship delayed offloading because it was unclear which governing body would be responsible for issuing the letters of credit, one Cairo-based trader told the news source.

“The government has been introducing all these new changes gradually to the market, what might have caused confusion on the supply side was the way the change in vegetable oil imports was brought in as it did not allow the market to adjust,” Nomani Nomani, a former head of GASC told the news source.

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