Egyptian law: exporting masks, alcohol now punishable by jail



Thu, 19 Mar 2020 - 02:59 GMT


Thu, 19 Mar 2020 - 02:59 GMT

FILE - People hold bottles of alcohol sterilizers in Philippines - Reuters

FILE - People hold bottles of alcohol sterilizers in Philippines - Reuters

CAIRO – 19 March 2020: As Trade Minister Neveen Game’ on Tuesday temporarily banned the export of masks and all types of alcohol, in a bid to avoid shortage of medical equipment necessary to fight coronavirus, exporting them now is punishable by law no. 95 of 1945 by up to 7 years in prison.

The move to ban the export of masks and alcohol sterilizers for three months comes after large amounts of these products were found to be exported, over the past few days, to the countries witnessing COVID-19 outbreak, a matter that badly affected the quantities of these products in the local market, she added.

An amendment of the article punishes those smuggling or trying to smuggle outside the country petroleum products and products that the country imposed an export ban on by at least three-year-imprisonment and an LE 100,000 ($6,348) fine. The maximum punishment is an LE 1 million ($63,481) and a seven-year-imprisonment.

The court also seizes the products and the transportation means used to commit the crime.

In case the convict committed a similar crime within one year after he finishes his imprisonment term, the minimum and maximum penalties would be doubled, according to the law.

The Egyptian Health Ministry on Wednesday confirmed 14 new cases of the novel coronavirus, bringing the total number of cases to 210.

The new cases were all in contact with previously confirmed cases, the ministry said in a statement.

The total number of people recovering from the deadly virus reached 28, said Health Ministry spokesman Khaled Megahed, as part of 40 cases who turned negative.

Until Wednesday, six people have died in Egypt of the coronavirus.

The last two deaths were announced Tuesday, including a 78-year-old Italian national and a 70-year old Egyptian national in Cairo.

Both of them died at the isolation hospital, the spokesman said, adding that the family members of the dead Egyptians are being tested.



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