• Rabat

  • Wednesday, May 22, 2024 at 4:45 AM
    Last Update : Tuesday, May 28, 2024 at 5:33 AM

Moroccans Grumble as Gas Cylinder Price Rises Demanding Serious Solutions

(AWP) - A decision by the Moroccan Ministry of Economy and Finance to increase the price of butane gas cylinders has sparked a public outcry in this North African nation, where the citizens were already complaining about price hikes.

In a statement, the ministry announced that the price increase decision was effective as of Monday.

“As part of a program to reduce direct subsidies, from which 3.6 million families benefit, until April, and based on the principle of releasing subsidies for eligible families via registration in the unified social record, upgraded by the government within a body of social programs, the butane gas price system will be partially overhauled,” said the statement.

The price of one 3 KG gas cylinder rose by 2.5 dirhams, while one 12 KG cylinder rose by 10 dirhams.

The decision caused a stir amongst citizens and merchants, who expressed concerns about the latest hike, while the government said that the removal of subsidies for gas will be gradual, and affirmed that it was still subsidizing the price of one cylinder by nearly USD 7.

“We were shocked at the gas cylinder price increase. This is going to damage many sectors, including trade and laundry. For instance, I consume 12 cylinders per week. This increase is going to cost me a lot. It is no small matter,” said Mohammed Farkani, owner of a laundry shop.

He hopes the government will find a “serious solution, taking into account citizens’ financial circumstances, and the price hikes in all walks of life.”

“We will soon celebrate Eid AlAdha, and we wish the government would reconsider its decision and show some concern for citizens, for whom this increase is very high,” he noted.

Kaouthar Balkouch, a housewife, called the increase “unreasonable.”
“It is happening at the same time as an overall price hike. We depend on cooking gas in the kitchen, and consume more than one. It is not acceptable to have such a sudden increase, 10 dirhams (roughly $1) at one go. The prices of vegetables and other items are already soaring. We are tired of these price hikes,” she asserted.

(One U.S. dollar equals 9.92 Moroccan dirhams)