Transfer delays won't affect duty-free car import eligibility: Egypt’s finance minister

Ahram Online , Wednesday 24 May 2023

Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait assured Egyptian expatriates that the delay in their transfer of imported car fees will not make them ineligible for the duty-free initiative, read a statement on Wednesday.

File photo showing new cars in a parking lot in Cairo, Egypt. REUTERS
File photo showing new cars in a parking lot in Cairo, Egypt. REUTERS


The expats who started the procedures to transfer the deposits required for the duty-free car import initiative before 14 May will be eligible for the tax and customs duty exemptions, Maait announced.

"The authentication of bank transfers typically takes time, but don't worry," the minister commented.

Maait confirmed that the Egyptian government is committed to repaying the deposits of the car import initiative on due dates.

He added that citizens can opt out of the initiative and withdraw their money after a year of receiving approval on the import transaction by submitting an application on the online platform.

The head of the Egyptian Customs Authority Shahat Ghaturi revealed that around 40,000 import transactions have been approved while 37,000 are still under inspection.

He added that the import approvals and the customs duty cuts are valid for five years.

On 8 May, Maait announced that the initiative has brought in $713 million in transfers since its launch in 2022, which account for nearly 30 percent of its original target.

Egypt launched the car import initiative in October 2022 to attract foreign currency, with a revenue target of $2.5 billion.

Egyptians over 16 with valid residence permits and foreign bank accounts can import one private passenger car for personal use within five years of enrolling in the initiative.

Participants were required to invest the saved customs duties and taxes in foreign currency in an interest-free five-year certificate of deposit, which can be recovered in Egyptian pounds at the end of the period according to the exchange rate at that time.


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