Egyptian Health Minister Hala Zayed said on Sunday that the country will be completely self-sufficient in infant milk formula by next year.
The explained that the health ministry provides 22.5 million bottles of subsidized infant milk, which costs LE46 before subsidizing and is now disbursed for children under 6 months at LE5 pounds and for those older at LE26.
Zayed’s remarks came during a session on improving the health care system at the National Youth Conference, which is currently being held in the Cairo University and was attended by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
The ministry added that there is no problem in subsidizing the infant milk, but the issue arises during the process of organization and ensuring that the milk goes to its beneficiaries.
They added that the Armed Forces are providing infant milk from abroad, and that by next year the Armed Forces will be producing infant milk within the country without needing to import.
Zayed said that providing infants mild will be through automated system in 6 governorates; Suez, Ismailia, Port Said, Gharbia, Beni Suef, Menoufia, and there will be expansions in main stores to accommodate the strategic stock.
Infant milk shortages hit Egypt in 2016, pushing parents to protest after a single bottle of the infant milk formula soared to LE60.
Egypt’s Health Ministry blamed importers at that time for monopolization of infant milk formula. The Armed Forces stepped in to solve the crisis and imported millions of packages of infant milk.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm