UAE subsidises rice, bread from April to combat rising prices

Ministry of Economy teams up with Union Coop to sell everyday foods at 2004 prices
UAE subsidises rice, bread from April to combat rising prices
The UAE is to subsidise everyday foods such as rice in a bid to combat rising prices. (Getty Images)
By Andy Sambidge
Fri 11 Mar 2011 10:54 AM

Measures are underway to subsidise rice and bread to combat rising prices for everyday foods in the UAE.

The Union Cooperative Society, in cooperation with the UAE's Ministry of Economy, has launched the first phase of a campaign to curb food price rises by subsidising premium varieties of rice and Arabic bread, state news agency WAM reported.

The subsidy will effect Sinara and Itihad brands of rice and bread respectively from April 1 and will last throughout the year, it was announced by Majid Al Shamisi, chairman of the Society, and Hashem Al Nuaimi, director of the Consumer Protection Administration at the Ministry of Economy.

The new move will see rice and bread being sold at the Union outlets at 2004 prices.

The Society is currently conducting studies to widen the scope of the drive to cover a large variety of essential food, WAM added.

Last week, the United Nations said that global food prices rose to a record in February and grain costs may continue to rise in the next several months, with only rice keeping the world from a repeat of the crisis three years ago.

An index of 55 food commodities rose 2.2 percent to 236 points from 230.7 in January, the eighth consecutive gain, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation said.

Wheat rose as much as 58 percent on the Chicago Board of Trade in the past 12 months, corn gained 87 percent and rice added 6.5 percent.

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