"DAMASCUS, 30 June 2008 (IRIN) - Basil the baker is not a happy bread maker.
“Everything is more difficult to afford now, and it will get worse,” he said, amid the dough and ovens of his bakery in the middle class district of Shalan in Damascus.
The availability of cheap food has been a cornerstone Syrian domestic economic policy.
However, there are growing doubts among ordinary people and analysts as to how much longer the country can remain relatively insulated from the global food crisis which has sparked riots in over 30 countries, including Egypt, where a similar authoritarian socialist government is in place.
The government exerts significant control over food prices through its control of the marketing, import and export of agricultural produce, but the agricultural sector has been partially liberalised, and food prices have risen 20 percent in the last six months, according to the World Food Programme (WFP)."
So now Syria and Egypt have socialist governments?