Egypt has managed to contain fallout of current international economic crisis: Finance minister

MENA , Friday 8 Apr 2022

"We managed to overcome the fallout of the current international economic crisis," Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait said on Thursday, adding that the Egyptian economy has been strong and flexible enough to deal with consecutive international challenges since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.

Finance Minister Mohamed Maait on Thursday (Photo courtesy of the Egyptian cabinet)

Maait made the remarks during a meeting with the Egyptian Businessmen Association (EBA) and the Egyptian Lebanese Businessmen Friendship Association (ELBA) on Thursday.

The government launched a financial package of EGP 135 billion in line with presidential directives to mitigate the impact of the international crisis on its population and economic sectors, he said.

Under the relief measures, the cabinet will secure EGP 2.7 billion to add 450,000 families to the Takaful and Karama programs.

The cabinet approved a draft law that includes a simplified and definitive tax system to settle accumulated tax files, before the start of the implementation of the new tax mechanism.

Referring to the progress realised in upgrading the tax mechanism, he added that a new stage of fully mechanised tax mechanisms will be launched as of July to help merge the informal economy into the formal one.

In addition, the government is aiming to improve wages and pensions by increasing periodic and special bonuses, starting from the current month of April, and increasing the tax exemption limit by 25 percent from EGP 24,000 to EGP 30,000.

The pay of April will include the salary increase recently approved by Law 16/2022 to mitigate the impact of global economic crises on the population under the directives of President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi.

President El-Sisi signed the law on 1 April accelerating salary increase for public servants governed by the Civil Service Law. The law grants a special increment to employees not addressed by the Civil Service Law.

Under the law, pensions shall be also increased for civil and military beneficiaries. The minister pointed out that the minimum value of the increase shall be EGP 100.

The cabinet also allocated an additional EGP 190.5 billion to apply a 13 percent increase in pensions as of April.

The measures also included increasing the income tax exemption limit from EGP 24,000 to 30,000, in addition to disbursing a previously-announced eight percent salary increase for public servants governed by the Civil Service Law as of the next month.

Furthermore, the cabinet decided to grant a special allowance of 15 percent of the basic salary to employees not addressed by the Civil Service Law as of April.

Under the new measures, employees, including those covered and not covered by the Civil Service Law, will be given an additional monthly allowance as of the next month.

The cabinet also decided to set the customs dollar at a rate of EGP 16 for basic commodities and production requirements.

The state treasury will also secure EGP 3.75 billion to give property tax exemptions to industrial facilities for three years, the cabinet said.

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