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Egypt's banks raise $3 bln since pound float decision

Ahram Online , Monday 21 Nov 2016
Central Bank of Egypt (Photo: Reuters)
File Photo: Central Bank of Egypt (Photo: Reuters)
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Egypt’s local lenders have collected around $3 billion since the decision to liberalise the pound’s exchange rate against the foreign currencies earlier this month, state news agency MENA reported on Monday citing a central bank official.

The Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) decided in early November to float the pound and raise key interest rates as part of a set of reforms aimed at alleviating the dollar shortage, eradicating the black market and stabilising the country's flagging economy.

The central bank sub-governor Tarek Fayed said that the latest economic decisions will help Egypt’s competitiveness in attracting tourism, and that foreign investors have returned to invest in the local-currency treasury bills.

The average exchange rate for the US dollar at local banks currently registers more than EGP 17.5.

The CBE’s governor Tarek Amer said earlier this year in a televised interview that he expects to see $15 billion to $20 billion in foreign investments in Egyptian government treasury bills and bonds by the end of 2016.

The National Bank of Egypt and Banque Misr said on Sunday, according to the Al-Ahram daily newspaper, that they have raised EGP 57 billion and EGP 43 billion respectively as of Thursday out of their newly issued high-yielding certificates of deposit (CDs).

Egypt's largest two state banks offered on 3 November 18-month CDs at an interest rate of 20 percent and three-year CDs at 16 percent.

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