The Minister of Internal Trade and Consumer Protection, Amr Salem, said that the value of the phone bill is a criterion that determines whether the phone owner needs government support or not.
Salem said during a workshop on social support policies and proposed alternatives, that a person paying 25,000 Syrian pounds for a mobile phone bill does not need support.
The minister stressed that there is no tendency to give up or ease support, but those who do not need support should not receive it, al-Baath newspaper reported.
“Senior taxpayers provide statements and figures about their work to the extent where you expect that they need charity at a time when the employee pays the full tax, however senior taxpayers avoid it.” the minister said.
“We are not against the rich if they work properly. Our task as a government is to help those who do not have the capacity. From this perspective, the subsidy of goods will be replaced by cash. However, the application needs a long time and specific mechanisms to determine who needs the aid first.”
Jamal Qadri, president of the Workers’ Union, said that the mobile phone bill cannot be considered an accurate indicator to determine whether or not support should be given –there are people who earn their income from working on mobile phones. He pointed out that there are more accurate indicators.
The ministry identifies subsidized materials by including them on the smart cards, within specific quantities and periods. The most prominent products include sugar, rice, tea, as well as bread, and gasoline.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.