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Power cuts hike up demand for generators.

Summary: CAIRO - The market of electric appliances in central Cairo has been booming as demand for electric generators and searchlights shot up due to power cuts.The phenomenon hiked up the prices of generators' because of a supply shortage.

As the summer season and the exams near, citizens are keen to have sufficient lighting in their homes.

"The prices of electric generators are on the rise day after day, because of the recent hike of the US dollar, but citizens are compelled to buy them due to repeated power cuts," Reda Abdel Same'e, an electric generators' shop owner, told Al-Messa newspaper.

He added that the prices of the generators used by companies and factories are between LE30,000 ($4,360) and LE37,000 ($5,378), while the generators for lighting homes are estimated between LE1,400 ($203) and LE4,000 ($581).

"We import electric generators from Spain, Germany, Italy, and China. There is a surge in sales due to repeated power cuts," said Ali Hamed, the director of an imports company.

He added that the prices of generators rose this year. A Chinese generator reached LE2,400 ($349) compared to LE1,400 ($203) last year, while the price of Japanese generator reached LE3,000 ($436) compared to LE2,800 ($407) last year.

"The prices of generators are expected to be higher during the next season of exams and the holy fasting month of Ramadan," he explained.

"The prices of searchlights have also increased due to power cuts. A neon searchlight now sells for LE235 ($34) compared to LE150 ($22) last year. The price of an ordinary Chinese searchlight reached LE175 ($25), compared to LE95 ($14) a year ago," said Ayman Mohamed Shban, an owner of an electric appliances shop.

According to Shban, a lot of customers prefer the neon searchlights, despite their higher prices, as they are easy to use.

"The price of neon searchlight, either Egyptian or Chinese, is between LE170 ($24.71) and LE235 ($34), and the market of searchlights in Abdel Aziz street flourished as many people prefer to buy the searchlights more than the candles" said Hossam Bayomi, a vendor at in central Cairo Abdel Aziz street.

Bayomi said there were many other brands of searchlights on the market for Palestinian and Libyan customers, who also suffer from power cuts in their countries.

"I bought some of searchlights for my house costing LE500 ($73), because I have three sons in different educational stages, and I want to provide more light for them," said Mohamed Helmi, a civil servant.

He complained about his weak salary in view of price hikes, calling on the government to fix this nagging problem.

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Publication:The Egyptian Gazette (Cairo, Egypt)
Geographic Code:7EGYP
Date:Apr 20, 2013
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