Less than LE100 mn of funds pilfered by ex-regime retrieved: Minister
Egypt's finance minister blames 'lack of funds' in overseas accounts of convicted Mubarak-era officials for seeming inability to repatriate ill-gotten gains
Ahram Online, Wednesday 6 Feb 2013
Egypt's minister of finance El-Morsi Hegazy (Photo: Ahram)
Less than LE100 million of the funds illegally obtained by the Mubarak regime and deposited abroad have been successfully repatriated to Egypt, Finance Minister El-Morsy Hegazy announced Wednesday.
Speaking at a meeting of the Shura Council’s financial and economic affairs committee, the minister said that the lack of funds in the overseas bank accounts of convicted Mubarak-era officials posed the greatest obstacle to retrieving state funds illegally acquired by the former regime.
He went on to say that his ministry had set up two new bank accounts at the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) specifically allocated for repatriated funds.
One account had since received LE12 billion in legal penalties paid out by convicted steel tycoon Ahmed Ezz, along with another LE27 million paid by former first lady Susanne Mubarak.
The second account, Hegazy said, had since received LE69 million in funds paid to the state by former regime figures who were no longer under investigation as part of an ongoing ‘reconciliation’ initiative.
Last November, Egypt recovered around $1.8 billion worth of monies and land illegally acquired by Mubarak-era officials. These, the minister explained, had been deposited in CBE account no. 333/333.
In January, Egypt’s justice ministry proposed draft legislation aimed at regulating the repatriation of pilfered public funds deposited overseas by members of the Mubarak regime. The draft law is still awaiting approval by the government of Prime Minister Hisham Qandil.