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Egypt parliamentary committee expects dollar to cost EGP 13 this summer

The Planning and Budget Committee says the country's IMF-inspired reforms have begun to pay off, depressing demand for USD and causing its value to drop 5% in the past two days

Gamal Essam El-Din , Wednesday 15 Feb 2017

The Egyptian parliament's Planning and Budget Committee is set to release a report soon, which predicts that the average price of the US dollar in Egyptian pounds will drop drastically by this summer.

The price of the dollar is expected to register less than EGP 13 on the currency market, Deputy Chairman of the committee Yasser Omar told reporters on Tuesday.

The price of the US dollar registered on Wednesday an average of EGP 16.4, falling drastically from an average of EGP 18.5 a week ago, according to online date from the three major banks, the Commercial International Bank (CIB), the National Bank of Egypt (NBE), and Banque Misr.

Omar said the IMF-inspired economic reforms which the government of prime minister Sherif Ismail adopted three months ago have started to pay off.

"These policies, which aimed to reduce imports and cut subsidies, have led to a sharp drop in demand for US dollars; as a result, the dollar has lost around five percent of its value against the Egyptian pound in the last two days," Omar said.

He added that the committee's report anticipates "a rebound in foreign tourism into the country and an increase in Egyptian exports will combine to push the dollar to lose further value, reaching EGP 13 or even less."

"If Russian tourists begin to flow into the country via direct flights, coupled with a surge in Egyptian exports and a further reduction in imports, this would surely lead to a further drop in the value of the dollar," Omar said.

According to Omar, "the report, which covers the country's economic performance in the last six months, also forecasts that a drastic drop in the value of the dollar would help Egypt recover from one of its most severe economic crises in decades, and push inflation rates down."

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