Egypt’s account deficit shrinks by 10.2% in FY2021/22: CBE

Doaa A.Moneim , Wednesday 5 Oct 2022

Egypt’s current account deficit shrank in FY2021/2022 by 10.2 percent, registering $16.6 billion, down from $18.4 billion recorded in the preceding fiscal year, the Central Bank of Egypt announced on Wednesday.



The CBE attributed this mainly to the unprecedented rise in oil and non-oil merchandise exports, which inched up by 53.1 percent, alongside the significant recovery of the tourism sector’s revenues, which more than doubled compared to the previous fiscal year.

Moreover, a marked increase was seen in Suez Canal receipts, according to the CBE.

“These developments came despite the decline in global economic activity triggered by the Russian-Ukrainian crisis, which has driven up energy and commodity prices significantly, thus driving central banks abroad to adopt tighter monetary policy to contain the inflation wave,” said the CBE.

On the other hand, net inflows of the capital and financial account declined as a result of non-residents’ withdrawal from the portfolio investment in Egypt, which coincided with the tightening monetary policies adopted by the US Federal Reserve (Fed) that led to a mass flight of hot money from emerging markets, the CBE noted.

Against this background, the balance of payments (BoP) posted an overall deficit of $10.5 billion in FY 2021/2022, almost all of which was realised in the second half (H2) of FY2021/2022 (January-June 2022), CBE data showed.

On tourism revenues, the CBE revealed that they increased in FY2021/22 by $5.9 billion to reach $10.7 billion, up from $4.9 billion recorded in the previous fiscal year, partly offsetting the adverse effect of the drop in the number of tourists coming from Russia and Ukraine since the outbreak of the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

The oil trade balance also attained a surplus amounting to $4.4 billion against a slight deficit of $6.7 million registered in the previous fiscal year, owing to the surge in oil exports by $9.4 billion in light of the increase in the value of natural gas exports on the back of the noticeable hike in global prices and the rise of their exported quantities, along with the opening of new markets in Europe, mainly in Turkey, Italy, France, Spain, Croatia, and Greece, according to the CBE.

However, the non-oil trade deficit widened by 13.7 percent in FY2021/22 to register $47.8 billion, up from $42.1 billion posted in the previous fiscal year.

The CBE attribute this to the increase in non-oil imports, which exceeded that of non-oil exports.

In this respect, the CBE explained that non-oil merchandise imports rose by 18.7 percent to record $73.8 billion compared to FY2020/21. In addition, the non-oil merchandise exports increased by 29.1 percent to reach $25.9 billion.

For the portfolio investment in Egypt, the CBE indicated that it shifted from a net inflow of $18.7 billion in FY2021/22 to a net outflow of $21 billion in FY2020/21, explaining that this withdrawal of investment mirrored investors’ concerns over the Ukraine war, as well as the tighter monetary policies adopted by the US Fed that have led to outflows of hot money from emerging markets.

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