Egypt’s Prime Minster Mustafa Madbouli - Photo via Facebook
CAIRO – 16 April 2020: Egypt’s Cabinet approved number of decisions and draft laws during its weekly meeting, Tuesday, including a draft law to establish tourism and antiquities fund.
The meeting that was held through video conference addressed number of economic, social and political issues in addition to the containment measures against the coronavirus pandemic and preparations for the holy month of Ramadan, Easter and Sham el-Nessiem holidays.
The Cabinet agreed to a bill on additional appropriations in the 2019/2020 budget as part of the 100-billion-pound stimulus package announced by President Abdel Fatah el Sisi to ease the repercussions of a coronavirus outbreak.
The LE10 billion extra allocation will be opened within the 6th Chapter of Purchase of Nonfinancial Assets (Investments). These decisions were announced to come as part of State efforts to push forward production in all economic sectors and increase government investments in a way that will raise employment rate.
The government also decided to extend the deadline for filing tax returns for no longer than three months [that could be renewed for another 3-month-period] in sectors of tourism, antiquities, and media.
Following the meeting, Egypt’s Prime Minster Mustafa Madbouli held a press conference to announced the government decisions for the spring holidays which include the eastern Easter that falls next Sunday, followed by the ancient Egyptian spring festival, Sham El-Nessim on Monday.
Madbouli announced the complete closure of public gardens and beaches next Monday, along with suspending public transportation, including Cairo Metro and National Railways.
“We understand the Egyptians desire to celebrate the holiday; however, these decisions come for the favor of Egyptians amid fears of Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak.” Madbouli said.
He added that the government aims to reduce social gatherings as possible which will eliminate the spread of Covid 19.
Madbouli explained that “the government has been discussing these Easter decisions during the past three days, in order to maintain the currant situation and not to witness any deterioration during the coming days.”
“However, we were worried after seeing that Egyptians were gathering in the streets during the past days” Madbouli added, explaining the need of announcing Easter’s complete closure decisions.
He said, “Therefore, we preferred to take more firm measures, including expanding the complete closure on cafes and shopping malls until Monday. Additionally, we will close all gardens, beaches and any places that might witness social gatherings. We also decided to suspend all public transportation.”
Madbouli wished all Egyptians happy holidays, and urged them to avoid gatherings in order to stay safe.