The Political Economy of the Baladi Bread Supply Chain

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Previous chapters have unpacked the roles (Chapter 3), functions (Chapter 4) and distortions (Chapter 5) associated with the opera­tions of the baladi bread subsidy regime. Key emphasis was placed on identifying actors at each step of the supply chain. This shed light on how the incentives of various actors are structured and how they derive rents from the system.The institutional details that emerged at the micro-level revealed new insights into the behaviour of a small group of intermediaries in the system and the potential opportunities for distor­tions to occur. The impetus behind the analysis is the staunch opposition of some of these intermediaries to any reforms that would jeopardise their source of rents, as was seen with the baladi bread reforms initiated by President Morsi’s cabinet in early 2013.