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State-owned Yemen Petroleum Company (YPC) this week cut gasoline prices by around 15%, in a part-rollback of price hikes that came into effect in late-July, with the government’s implementation of subsidy cuts aimed at reforming its much-maligned subsidy policy (MEES, 15 August).
Subsidy reform has long been discussed in Yemen, one of the Middle East and North Africa’s poorest nations, in an attempt to stave off economic collapse.
Unsurprisingly, the July subsidy cuts proved widely unpopular among the Yemeni people, triggering mass protests, led by Shi’a Houthi tribesmen, and armed clashes in the capital San’a. Following weeks of unrest, the militant group stormed the capital over the weekend, seizing much of it in just a matter of hours. (CONTINUED - 336 WORDS)