Minister of Trade and Industry, Tarek Qabil, stated on Thursday that the Egyptian government decided to postpone applying 10 per cent cuts on vehicles imported from the European Union (EU) in early 2018, within the Egyptian-EU partnership agreement.
The agreement provides that customs duties on European vehicles shall be reduced annually by 10 per cent with duties completely eliminated in 2019.
Qabil clarified that market studies conducted by the Ministry of Trade urged the government to suspend 10 present cuts on custom duties, aiming to protect car industry in Egypt from losses.
The decision was taken in agreement with the European Union to encourage the development of national industrialization, Qabil confirmed.
Qabil added that according to Article 6 of the Egyptian-EU agreement, the Egyptian government has the right to suspend custom reductions for a temporary period, not exceeding one year.
The Egyptian government also has the right to postpone applying new custom reductions for a specific duration on the affected sectors such as the car industry which is undergoing a restructure process in cooperation with the European partners, according to article 11.
Qabil noted that the Ministry of Finance and Custom Authority will take necessary procedures to suspend custom reductions on European vehicles in early 2018.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm