Posted on August 17, 2015

Government subsidy on meat and wheat flour was QR242.95m ($66.63m) in the first half of this year, said The Peninsula. The subsidy increased by 12.5 percent from QR215.9m over the same period last year. A lion's share of it was on meat -- QR181.12m compared to QR151.9m in the first half of last year.

The subsidy is provided to Widam, the Qatari meat and livestock company, a state-backed listed entity, reports local Arabic daily Al Arab. Formerly known as Mawashi, the company ensures that Australian mutton, as an easily accessible source of protein for the common man, is sold in retail at a subsidised price of QR14.50 per kg. It also at times (mostly during the two Eids) offers the expensive Syrian, Jordanian and other sheep to Qatari citizens at subsidised rates.

Qatar Airways Baku

The subsidy for wheat flour is given to Zad Holding, formerly Qatar Flour Mills. It provides flour at subsidised rates to bakeries so they could sell the traditional Arabic bread 'khubz', staple diet of the common man, for QR1 per packet. 'Khubz' and Australian meat prices have remained unchanged for years for the benefit of the common man despite steep price rise generally witnessed in the country for several years. However, where the subsidy for meat has risen sharply in the first six months of the year due to growing demand fuelled by rising population, the subsidy on wheat flour has come down compared to the first half of 2014.

In the first six months last year, the subsidy on flour was QR64m which dropped to QR61.83m this year (January-June).

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